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Shrimp Empanadas


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  • Masa (Dough):
  • 8 oz. sweet potato, cooked
  • 1-1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 1-3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Relleno (Filling):
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (or dende oil)
  • 1/2 a small onion
  • 3 cloves of garlic, mashed
  • 1/2 teaspoon bay leaf, finely crumbled
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 tablespoon green bell pepper
  • 1 tablespoon red bell pepper
  • 3 tablespoon cilantro or parsley, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons lime zest
  • 2 thai green chilies or 1 small jalapeno, minced (optional)
  • 8 oz. shrimp, peeled and deveined, chopped fine
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons flour
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 1 large egg lightly beaten with 1 tablespoon water



Step 1

For the Masa: In a large bowl mash sweet potatoes with a potato masher (a food processor will make them gummy). Mix in the butter and the flour mixture, kneading gently to get a smooth dough adding a little more flour if it gets sticky. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest for 30 minutes.

For the Relleno: Heat olive oil in a medium frying pan over low heat. Add the onion, garlic paste, bell and hot peppers, cilantro and zest. Cook until the onion is translucent, about 4 minutes, stirring a few times with a wooden spoon. Add the shrimp and lime juice and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated. Sprinkle in the flour, mixing well. Add the coconut milk and cook, stirring, to obtain a creamy consistency and the flour is cooked. Remove from the heat and let cool.

To Assemble: Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to about 1/8-inch thick. Cut into 3" Circles. Place about 1 level tablespoon of filling in the center of each circle, fold over into a cresent shape and press the edges together with your fingers to seal. Brush with the egg mixture and bake in the upper third of the oven until golden, about 15 minutes. Serve hot.


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