Submitted by Yosef Grossman
This recipe to me is the ultimate fusion of flavors, all centering around rich comfort food.
The use of masa harina, traditional Mexican corn dough, and earthy fava beans, traditional Spanish fare brought over with the conquistadors, coupled with the creamy tartness of goat cheese and herbaceous swiss chard, combine to make this recipe the perfect one-bite meal.
Don’t be intimidated by the use of the masa harina! It is one of the most forgiving doughs to work with.
The annatto seed, available at most Latin and Asian markets, lends the dough a rich golden reddish hue and subtle lemony taste.
Serve with avocado, a rich and thick matbucha or cooked tomato salsa, or a salsa verde.
Follow the measurements on the package for water to flour ratio, using hot tap water, working the water in until the dough feels like soft cookie dough.
If using the annatto seed, knead a hefty pinch into the dough at this point.
Let the dough rest in a bowl covered with plastic wrap at room temperature for at least 30 minutes.
In a medium size frying pan, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil on a medium flame.
Add the garlic, stir for about 30 seconds until fragrant, and immediately add the beans and liquid (they will thicken up quickly so don’t be afraid to add what may look like a lot of liquid).
Season aggressively with salt and pepper (you will need more than you think), and add a couple pinches oregano.
When the bean mixture begins to bubble, use a potato masher to mash the beans to a course, creamy, but still textured consistency.
Allow the beans to heat through, mixing constantly, and remove them from the fire.
In a medium size skillet with a lid, melt the butter on a medium flame.
Add the Swiss chard, and a good sprinkle of salt, and cover for 4 minutes to steam.
Uncover, increase the flame to high, and cook, stirring, until all liquid evaporates (you can add a small amount of water if it looks dry).
In a large bowl, mix the beans, greens and crumbled cheese.
Take a roughly ping-pong ball sized piece of dough, roll in your palms to form a smooth ball, and press between two pieces of heavy plastic (I like to use a ziploc bag cut into two squares).
If you don’t own a tortilla press, use a clear pie tin to press down to form a circle of dough, a few inches in diameter and about 1/4 inch thick.
Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil in a medium skillet on medium high heat.
Spoon about a tablespoon and a half of the filling in the middle of the empanada, fold it over, and pinch the edges to seal it. Repeat with remaining dough and filling.
Fry the empanadas until golden brown and developing dark spots on one side, about 4 minutes, then flip and fry the other side.
Drain on paper towel lined plates, and serve with avocado, thinly sliced radish, cabbage, tomato, or anything else you can possibly think of.