Monthly Archives: April 2016

Empanadas de estilo colombiano




  • 1 ½ cups precooked yellow cornmeal (masarepa or masa harina) *I feel like I always end up adding another 1/2 cup or more. If you don’t use enough, it’s a wet, sticky mess and will break apart while frying.
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1.5 teaspoons Sazón Goya con azafran
  • ½ teaspoon Salt
  • 1 tube of chorizo (yes, it comes in a tube)
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed
  • 1 package of queso fresco
  • Enough vegetable or other frying oil to fill your pot. As with frying anything, the bigger the pot, the more you can fry at a time… but I’ve definitely used a medium-sized saucepan before.

(Pro Tip: Though some grocery stores, like Reasor’s, carry masa harina, I’m not sure if you’ll find the Sazón Goya seasoning outside of a supermercado. But don’t leave it out–you’ll love the flavor. I used it in my tamales too!)

To prepare the dough/”masa”: Place the precooked cornmeal in a large bowl. Add the Sazón Goya seasoning and salt and stir to mix well. Add the water and oil and mix to form dough. Pat the dough into a ball and knead for 2 minutes or until smooth. Cover with plastic and set aside for 20 minutes.

Cook the chorizo in a skillet like you would ground beef.  It’s super greasy, so you will want to drain off the excess grease (and possibly use paper towels to dab off even more). I know I’m making the chorizo sound awful, but it’s sooo good!!
Once the chorizo is done, transfer it into a bowl and add black beans and bits of queso fresco to the mix. You can also skip the chorizo and just do queso fresco & black beans. Either way, ¡delicioso!

How to form the empanadas:

First, place a few sheets of plastic wrap directly onto your counter. Next, put about half of the cornmeal dough onto the plastic wrap and cover it with another sheet of plastic wrap. The point is, you don’t want the dough to stick to your counter OR your rolling pin.

Next, roll out the dough until it’s not too thick and not too thin (maybe 1/4 inch? I don’t know – you can figure it out).

Now, watch this video for how to add the filling and cut the empanadas out. It’s in Spanish, but all you need to do is watch and learn. Skip forward to about 2:30 and watch the lady put a spoonful of filling in the middle of the dough circle, use the plastic wrap to fold over the dough, and then use a cup to cut an empanada out. (You can also use a small bowl). After each empanada, roll out the remaining dough before cutting out another one. Continue with the other half of the cornmeal dough.

Frying the empanadas
You’re almost done! All you have to do now is fry the empanadas  until they are golden and slightly crispy.
(Pro tip: You know when oil is hot enough for frying when little bubbles form around a wooden spoon. But don’t let it get so hot that it’s smoking– that could be dangerous!)
My fiancé and I have made the executive decision that ají amarillo, a Peruvian staple, is the perfect dipping sauce for these empanadas. It’s available on Amazon:
I hope you enjoy! Let me know if you run into trouble or if you have recommendations!
(Credit for the masa goes to