Sunday, September 4, 2011

Chicken Empanadas

3 cups chopped, cooked chicken
8 oz shreeded colby jack cheese
4 oz cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper
1 jalapeno, seeded & chopped
1 Tbsp ground cumin
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 (15 oz) pkg refrigerated pie crust

In a large bowl,  combine chicken & next 7 ingredients.  Unroll piecrust onto a lightly floured surface.  Roll into a 15" circle.  Cut our rounds, using a 3" cookie cutter.  Re-roll dough as needed.  Repeat procedure with remaining piecrusts, making 12 - 15 circles total.  Arrange one round on a clean, flat surface.  Lightly brush the edges of crust with water.  Place 1 heaping teaspoon of chicken mixture in the cneter of the round.  Fold the dough over the filling, pressing the edges with a fork to seal.  Repeat with the remaining rounds and chicken mixture. 

*Up to this point, the recipe can be made ahead and flash frozen on trays, then placed in ziploc bags.*

To serve:  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Lightly grease a baking sheet.  Arrange empanadas on baking sheet.  Bake from frozen 15 minutes covered, then 15 minutes uncovered.  Or, thaw in microwave and bake for 15 minutes.

Adapted from a Taste of Home recipe:

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