Corn & Green Bean Empanadas with Cucumber Salad & Creamy Ajo Dipping Sauce

Corn & Green Bean Empanadas

with Cucumber Salad & Creamy Ajo Dipping Sauce

55 MIN
2 Servings
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From the Test Kitchen

“Empanadas de humita,” or corn empanadas, are a tasty South American specialty that features flaky pastry dough wrapped around a savory-sweet corn filling. For our version, we’re adding seasonal green beans to fresh corn, then sautéing the vegetables with a blend of smoky spices. Inside, Monterey Jack cheese pulls all the flavors together and gives our filling enticing richness. A salad of crisp cucumber and cilantro adds bright contrast to the empanadas, which are even more delectable when dipped in our ajo (or garlic) sauce.

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  • Nutrition
    PER SERVING
  • Calories
    800 Cals (est.)
fresh
ingredients
time-saving
tips & techniques
Prepare the ingredients:
1 Prepare the ingredients:

Preheat the oven to 450°F. Wash and dry the fresh produce. Snap off and discard the green bean stems; cut into ¼-inch pieces. Remove and discard the corn husks and silks. Cut the corn kernels off the cob; discard the cob. Roughly chop the cilantro leaves and stems. Small dice the cheese. Peel and mince the garlic; smash with the side of your knife until it resembles a paste (or use a zester.) Halve the cucumber lengthwise; scoop out and discard the seeds, then large dice. Using a peeler, remove the lime rind, avoiding the pith; mince to get 2 teaspoons of zest (or use a zester). Quarter the lime. Peel and mince the shallot to get 2 tablespoons (you may have extra); place in a medium bowl with the juice of 2 lime wedges.

Make the filling:
2 Make the filling:

In a large pan, heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the green beans and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes, or until lightly browned. Add the corn and spice blend; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until fragrant. Add 2 tablespoons of water and cook, stirring frequently, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until the water has cooked off. Turn off the heat; stir in half the cilantro and the juice of 1 lime wedge. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a bowl.

Assemble the empanadas:
3 Assemble the empanadas:

Lightly oil a sheet pan. Fill a small bowl with water. Place the empanada wrappers on a work surface. Spoon 3 tablespoons of filling into the center of each wrapper (you may have extra filling); top with some of the cheese. Using your fingers, working 1 at a time, lightly moisten the edges of the wrappers with water; carefully fold in half over the filling. Firmly press down on the edges with a fork to crimp and seal completely. Transfer to the oiled sheet pan.

Bake the empanadas:
4 Bake the empanadas:

Place the empanadas in the oven and bake, rotating the sheet pan halfway through, 16 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown and puffed up. Remove from the oven and let stand for at least 2 minutes before serving.

Make the dipping sauce:
5 Make the dipping sauce:

While the empanadas bake, in a bowl, combine the crème fraîche, lime zest, half the garlic paste and the juice of the remaining lime wedge; season with salt and pepper to taste.

Make the salad & serve your dish:
6 Make the salad & serve your dish:

While the empanadas continue to bake, add the cucumber, remaining cilantro and remaining garlic paste to the shallot-lime juice mixture; drizzle with olive oil. Toss to combine; season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve with the baked empanadas and dipping sauce. Enjoy!

Tips from Home Chefs

1 Prepare the ingredients:

Preheat the oven to 450°F. Wash and dry the fresh produce. Snap off and discard the green bean stems; cut into ¼-inch pieces. Remove and discard the corn husks and silks. Cut the corn kernels off the cob; discard the cob. Roughly chop the cilantro leaves and stems. Small dice the cheese. Peel and mince the garlic; smash with the side of your knife until it resembles a paste (or use a zester.) Halve the cucumber lengthwise; scoop out and discard the seeds, then large dice. Using a peeler, remove the lime rind, avoiding the pith; mince to get 2 teaspoons of zest (or use a zester). Quarter the lime. Peel and mince the shallot to get 2 tablespoons (you may have extra); place in a medium bowl with the juice of 2 lime wedges.

2 Make the filling:

In a large pan, heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the green beans and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes, or until lightly browned. Add the corn and spice blend; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until fragrant. Add 2 tablespoons of water and cook, stirring frequently, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until the water has cooked off. Turn off the heat; stir in half the cilantro and the juice of 1 lime wedge. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a bowl.

Make the filling:
Assemble the empanadas:
3 Assemble the empanadas:

Lightly oil a sheet pan. Fill a small bowl with water. Place the empanada wrappers on a work surface. Spoon 3 tablespoons of filling into the center of each wrapper (you may have extra filling); top with some of the cheese. Using your fingers, working 1 at a time, lightly moisten the edges of the wrappers with water; carefully fold in half over the filling. Firmly press down on the edges with a fork to crimp and seal completely. Transfer to the oiled sheet pan.

4 Bake the empanadas:

Place the empanadas in the oven and bake, rotating the sheet pan halfway through, 16 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown and puffed up. Remove from the oven and let stand for at least 2 minutes before serving.

Bake the empanadas:
Make the dipping sauce:
5 Make the dipping sauce:

While the empanadas bake, in a bowl, combine the crème fraîche, lime zest, half the garlic paste and the juice of the remaining lime wedge; season with salt and pepper to taste.

6 Make the salad & serve your dish:

While the empanadas continue to bake, add the cucumber, remaining cilantro and remaining garlic paste to the shallot-lime juice mixture; drizzle with olive oil. Toss to combine; season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve with the baked empanadas and dipping sauce. Enjoy!

Make the salad & serve your dish:
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