INGREDIENTS: (serves 4)
For the Filling:
2 pounds ground beef 2 medium onions, finely diced 2 hard-boiled eggs, 1/2 teaspoon chili powder, 2 cans (14.5 ounces each) tomatoes, diced coarse salt and ground pepper, 1/3 cup of green olives
For the Dough
4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting 2 teaspoons baking powder 2 teaspoons salt 1/2 cup (1 stick) cold butter, cut into small pieces 1 cup cold water 1 large egg, lightly beaten with 1 tablespoon water (do not beat until ready to bake)
- Make the filling: In a 12-inch skillet over medium-high, cook meat until no longer pink, breaking it up into small pieces, 5 to 7 minutes.
- Add onion; cook until soft, 5 minutes. Stir in chili powder, eggs and tomatoes. Cook over medium until mixture has thickened, 12 to 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Fold in olives. Let cool.
- Make the dough: In a bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Using your fingers, cut in butter until mixture is crumbly. Add just enough cold water so dough comes together.
- Form empanadas: If desired, freeze on a baking sheet until firm, 2 hours. Wrap tightly in plastic; freeze in plastic bags.
- To bake fresh or frozen empanadas, preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place on parchment-lined baking sheets. Brush tops with egg wash, avoiding crimped edges. Bake until golden brown, rotating sheets halfway through, 30 to 40 minutes.
- 8 small lobster tails (6-14 oz each)
- 6 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 large yellow onion, chopped
- 4 cups Spanish rice or short grain rice, soaked in water for 30 minutes and then drained
- 8 garlic cloves, chopped
- 4 large pinches of Spanish saffron threads soaked in 1/2 cup water
- 2 tsp Sweet Spanish paprika
- 2 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 tsp pepper flakes
- 4 large Roma tomatoes, finely chopped
- 12 oz French green beans, trimmed
- 2 lb prawns or large shrimp or your choice, peeled and deveined
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
- In a large pot, bring 3 cups of water to a rolling boil. Add the lobster tails and let boil very briefly (1-2 minutes) until pink. Turn the heat off. Remove the lobster tails with a pair of tongs. Do not discard the lobster cooking water. When the lobster is cool enough to handle, remove the shell and cut into large chunks.
- In a large deep pan or skillet, heat 3 tbsp olive oil. Turn the heat to medium-high and add the chopped onions. Saute the onions for 2 minutes then add the rice, and cook for 3 more minutes, stirring regularly. Now add the chopped garlic and the lobster cooking water. Stir in the saffron and it’s soaking liquid, paprika, cayenne pepper, aleppo pepper, and salt. Stir in the chopped tomatoes and green beans. Bring to a boil and let the liquid slightly reduce, then cover (with lid or tightly with foil) and cook on low heat for 20 minutes.
- Uncover and spread the shrimp over the rice, pushing it into the rice slightly. Add a little water if needed. Cover and cook for another 10-15 minutes until the shrimp turns pink. Finally, add the cooked lobster chunks. When the lobster is warmed through, turn heat off. Garnish with parsley.
- Serve the paella hot with your favorite white wine.
- Pro-Tip:Depending on the kind of rice you use, you may or not need to soak it in water before cooking. I have found that soaking rice in water for 15 minutes or so (until you are able to easily break a grain of rice between your thumb and index finger) helps speed the cooking process. When you do this, you naturally use less cooking water. The rice cooks evenly and more quickly.
- Note:In some paella recipes, you are almost “forbidden” from stirring the rice early in the cooking process. But it worked best for me this way.