Spicy Crab And Tomato Empanadas

Spicy Crab And Tomato Empanadas
4.5 from 2 ratings
There's much food to love in Mexico's state of Veracruz, especially the seafood from the Gulf. In the morning, stroll along the waterfront on the lookout for the bicycle vendors selling warm fish empanadas from baskets. Flaky pastry stuffed with shredded fish, tomatoes, olives, capers and sometimes hot chile, these empanadas will fill your dreams.This recipe is by JeanMarie Brownson and was originally published in the Chicago Tribune.
Prep Time
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Spicy Crab and Tomato Empanadas recipe - The Daily Meal
Total time: 1.48 hours
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup veracruz tomato-olive salsa (recipe follows)
  • 1/2 pound premium lump crab meat, about 1 1/2 cups, drained
  • 2 tablespoon chopped, drained pickled jalapenos
  • coarse salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 1 package (17 ounces) frozen puff pastry sheets, thawed according to package directions
  • 2 cans (14.5 ounces each) diced fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup finely-chopped white onion, well rinsed, drained (see notes)
  • 1/2 cup chopped pitted green olives
  • 2 tablespoon finely-chopped pickled jalapenos, drained (or 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh jalapeno)
  • 2 tablespoon drained capers, rinsed, optional
  • 2 tablespoon thinly-sliced fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoon thinly-sliced fresh cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  1. In a medium skillet over high heat, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil. Add 1 cup Veracruz tomato-olive salsa (recipe follows). Boil gently over medium heat, covered with a splatter guard, stirring occasionally until juices are reduced and salsa is quite thick, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool.
  2. Drain 1/2 pound premium lump crab meat (about 1 1/2 cups), and put into a bowl. Gently stir in the cooled salsa and 2 tablespoons chopped, drained pickled jalapenos. Season to taste with salt and refrigerate until cool, about 30 minutes or up to several hours.
  3. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. In a small bowl, whisk 1 large egg with 1 tablespoon milk. Transfer the crab filling to a strainer to drain off any excess liquid.
  4. Unfold 1 sheet of the puff pastry sheet onto a lightly floured work surface. Use a rolling pin to roll the sheet into a 10- by 10-inch square. Use a sharp knife to cut into 4 squares. Repeat rolling and cutting with second pastry sheet.
  5. Brush some of the egg mixture around the edges of each pastry square. Spoon 1/4 cup of the crab filling into the middle of each pastry square. Fold the pastry over the filling to make a triangle and to completely enclose the filling. Press the edges to seal. Use the tines of a fork to press the edges together decoratively. Repeat to make 8 empanadas.
  6. Transfer empanadas to the prepared baking sheets. Brush tops with some of the egg mixture and sprinkle with salt. Refrigerate until chilled, about 30 minutes or up to 2 hours.
  7. Heat the oven to 375 F convection or 400 F conventional. Bake until the empanadas are deep golden brown, about 30 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes before serving.
  8. To a food processor or blender, add 2 cans (14.5 ounces each) diced fire-roasted tomatoes with their liquid. Process with 4 on/off turns to roughly chop. Do not puree.
  9. Transfer the tomatoes to medium-size bowl. Add 1/2 cup finely-chopped white onion, 1/2 cup chopped pitted green olives, 2 tablespoons finely-chopped drained pickled jalapenos (or 1 tablespoon finely-chopped fresh jalapeno), 2 tablespoons rinsed and drained capers (optional), 2 tablespoons thinly-sliced fresh parsley, 2 tablespoons thinly-sliced fresh cilantro, 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil and 1/4 teaspoon salt.
  10. Serve salsa at room temperature.