Published April 29th, 2009
Chicken Empanadas with cilantro lime sauce
By Susie Iventosch

(Makes 8 medium or 16 small empanadas)

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, cut into small cubes
3 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
1/3-1/2 cup ice water

Mix flour and salt. Add butter and using pastry cutter or tips of fingers, blend butter into flour mixture until all butter is incorporated into flour. Sprinkle vinegar over the top and mix into flour-butter mixture with a fork. Add water a little at a time, mixing well and adding more as needed until dough can be rolled into 8 balls approximately 2-inches in diameter.
On a floured surface such as a cutting board, or smooth countertop, roll each ball into a flat circle approximately 7-inches* in diameter. Place 1/4-1/3 cup filling (recipe follows) on one half of the dough circle. Fold the other half over and seal the semi-circle all around the edges with a fork. This should seal the filling inside of pastry.
*If using as finger food for a large party, make pastry rounds half as big and use less filling accordingly.
Bake on a greased baking sheet or pizza stone for approximately 20 minutes in a 450-degree oven.

Chicken Empanada Filling

Cooking the chicken
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 cup white wine
1 cup water
1 tablespoon New Mexican Chile Powder
1 (4-oz.) can diced Ortega chilies
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped
In a large, deep frying pan place chicken breasts. Sprinkle with spices, cilantro and diced Ortega chilies. Pour wine and water over chicken and cover pan. Bring to a boil and reduce heat immediately to low, keeping covered. Simmer over low heat for about 20-30 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Remove from heat and cool. When completely cooled, shred chicken with two forks, or clean fingers! Set aside.
Assembling the filling
1 large onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, pressed
2 poblano chili peppers, flame roasted, seeded, peeled and chopped
1 red or orange bell pepper, chopped
1 tablespoon New Mexican Chile powder
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
In a separate frying pan, heat 3 tablespoons canola or olive oil and saut onion, garlic and bell pepper with spices until onions are translucent, approximately 5 minutes. Remove from heat and when cool, add poblano chilies, shredded chicken and grated cheese. Mix well and refrigerate until ready to assemble empanadas. Filling can be made a day or two ahead.

Lime Cilantro Sauce

1 bunch cilantro, stems removed
2 limes, juiced
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons sour cream
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive or canola oil
1/4 cup feta cheese, crumbled
1 teaspoon Louisiana hot sauce
Puree all together in a food processor. Refrigerate until ready to use.

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