There are more ways than one to fold, seal and repulgue empanadas!
Depending on how you will prepare the empanada you can select the best option. So are you ready to learn some tips and techniques to fold, seal and repulgue empanadas? Let’s get started!
Empanadas are a great snack or a tasty appetizer that you can find everywhere in South America and beyond.
To get those golden beautiful empanadas there are a number of things to help when you prepare your recipes.
It will keep the filling inside the empanada, not on your baking tray. prevent leaking the filling.
It takes a lot of practice to make a beautiful braid also know as the repulgue. All the more reason the make a lot of empanadas!
Take your time especially while braiding and try if you want to keep the empanadas in hand or leave them on a cutting board.
You may not be aware of it but there are different types of empanada dough.
Depending on the type of recipe you can choose the appropriate dough:
- Empanada dough for baking – this dough can be used for savory recipes that you want to bake
- Sweet empanada dough for baking – this recipe is great to use when you are baking sweet recipes
- Empanada dough for frying – this dough is the best for frying sweet and savory empanadas
In these recipes, you see that dough needs time to rest for it to perform at its best.
When the dough is relaxed it will spring back less, keep their shape and not shrink.
Roll the dough out to about 1/4 inch thickness for smaller empanadas. When you are making bigger empanadas keep the dough thicker as it needs to hold more filling.
Use an empanada mold to cut out a circle of dough.
Fill the empanada
One of the most important steps in folding an empanada is the amount of filling.
You empanada has to be well-stuff but never overfilled. If you overfill your empanada filling will be leaking while baking.
Put a proportional amount of filling in the center of the empanada dough circle.
Leave enough space at the edges of the dough all the way around the empanada. Try to keep the edges of the dough clean.
This to prevent that the edges will not stick due to the filling and fat.
There are two ways to fill an empanada:
- In hand – you can keep the empanada shells in the palm of your hand and then scoop an amount of filling on the dough. You can determine of this is enough for the empanada and fold from the hand.
- On cutting board – you can put the circle on a cutting board and add a spoon of filling on the dough
Tip sealing empanada edges
When it is time to seal the edge dip your finger in cold water or use a brush with cold water and run in along the entire edge of the dough.
Fold the empanada to cover the filling and press the edges together. This will ensure no dough is going to run out of the dough during baking.
Fold or repulgue empanadas edges
There are a number of ways to crimp the edge of an empanada:
With this technique, you use the tines of a fork to seal the empanada. Especially used on small appetizer empanadas.
This is also, the go-to method for fried empanadas but can be used with baked empanadas as well as you can see the empanadas Bonito.
The edge, also called repulgue, can also be braided. This is a more traditional way to seal the edge.
Used in most cases with baked empanadas but can also be used for fried empanadas.
You can braid on the side or along the top. You see this with Bolivian empanadas also known as Salteñas.
When the braid is on top the filling is less solid than a “regular” empanada so be careful when you bite into one.
Braiding is doing using a triangle when folding. Start on the right and fold a triangle of dough from the seal edge down over itself.
Press down to seal it, and fold down a second triangle right next to the first. Keep on repeating this motion until you folded the whole repulgue.
With this technique, you do not need any tools just your fingers. Brush the edges with water all along the edge and fold the empanada to cover the filling.
Take your thumb and first finger and press down the edge to seal it.
An easy way to fold the edges is to use an empanada mold. First, use the mold to cut out the empanada discs.
Then take one of these cut out empanada shells and place it on the opened mold.
Now add your filling in the middle and fold the empanada. Do not add too much filling else it will not close the empanada properly.
Then close the empanada mold firmly. By pressing the mold close you also seal the edges.
Now you know how to seal or repulgue empanadas! All you have to do is either bake or fry your empanadas golden brown and serve immediately when hot.
You can eat them cold as well!
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