Salted Arepa Empanadas With Salsa Verde

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 ½ cups warm water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups pre-cooked P.A.N. white cornmeal
  • 1 ½ cups (6 ounces) crumbled queso fresco
  • Vegetable oil, for frying
  • Sauce
  • 5 tomatillos, husked and rinsed
  • 1 jalapeño pepper
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • ¼ cup minced onion
  • Juice of ½ lime
  • ½ teaspoon salt

METHOD:

  1. In a large bowl, stir water and salt together until salt dissolves. Using your fingers, gradually stir cornmeal into the water, adding half a cup at a time. Work the mixture until it forms a soft, moist and pliable dough. Add more water if necessary, one tablespoon at a time.
  2. Shape dough into a log and cut the log to have workable pieces. Pat each one into a hockey-puck-shaped patty, into 4-inch round dish. Stuff with 1 ounce of queso fresco.
  3. Heat oil in a deep skillet over medium-high heat to 360 degrees. Cook arepas for 4-5 minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Transfer cooked arepas to a plate lined with paper towels to drain until cool enough to handle.
  4. Husk and rinse 5 tomatillos. Remove stem and seeds from jalapeño.
  5. Place tomatillos, pepper and garlic in blender or food processor and process until pureed but still chunky.
  6. Add onions, cilantro, lime juice and season with salt.
  7. Mix well and serve with empanadas.
  8. Eat with soul. Cook with pleasure!
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