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Momma’s Pumpkin Empanadas

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"Pumpkin Empanadas... doesn't get any better."

Serves | Prep Time 20 minutes | Cook Time 40 Minutes

Why I Love This Recipe

From our family to yours.. enjoy!

Ingredients You'll Need


1 can (15 oz.) pumpkin puree; do not use pie filling -- it’s too runny. (My mother and grandmother preferred fresh pumpkins, sweet potatoes or squash.)
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons butter
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3/4 cup dark brown sugar, packed firmly
1 teaspoon of vanilla

Empanada dough:

3 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup unflavored lard
2 eggs
½ cup milk
2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger 


Filling: First, melt the butter, add the brown sugar, and then stir together in a saucepan. Once they are devolved together, add pumpkin puree and spices. Stir for about 10 minutes or perhaps a few more; all told, it should take 10-12 minutes until the puree mix thickens. With this thicker mixture, remove the pan from the stove and let it cool off. Once it has cooled, place it in a bowl and set inside the refrigerator. Let it cool completely for 20 to 30 minutes; it can sit for as long as necessary.

Dough: Mix the dry ingredients together first. Then, add the lard and mix it together again. Make sure all the ingredients are mixed into small crumbles.  Next, add the eggs, milk and sugar. Mix everything together; once the consistency is firm, wrap it tightly in a plastic bag and then put in a cool place (preferably the refrigerator) for 15 to 20 minutes. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare the baking pan with lard and flour (very lightly), or spray.

Rolling out the dough:
Begin to separate the dough into small balls. Make sure to lightly flour the counter to ensure the dough doesn't stick to the work area. Roll out the separated dough balls. By applying light pressure to the rolling pin and rolling outward, in four directions, the dough should come out round. 

Remove the pumpkin mix from the refrigerator; it should be cool and slightly thicker. Add the pumpkin mix to one side of the rolled dough.  Fold the other end of the dough over the filling. Using a wet fork, seal off the edges of the empanada. Brush the outside of the empanada with egg whites and sprinkle with sugar. Use the fork to poke a few small holes in the top of the empanada, allowing steam to escape and the inside to cook along with the outside. Depending on the size of the empanada, the recipe will yield one dozen to two dozen treats. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Make sure the empanada is light brown in color and has a firm texture, then remove from the oven and let cool.

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