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Marina Thomas Reads at Recipes from Brooklyn & Beyond 2021 Showcase Event

Life Story Club Contributor

August 19, 2021

This was brought on by when my son was a teenager he had asked me to make something for a group he was in. They were having something for Black History Month. And I had never done this before and I decided I would try it. Since then I think a lot of my friends and relatives have enjoyed it.

So, we will start with the pastry. We use two eight-ounce packages of cream cheese, softened, three quarter cup butter or margarine, softened, two and a half cups of all-purpose flour, and a half a teaspoon of salt. For the filling, we are going to use a quarter cup of finely chopped onion, three cloves of garlic, minced, four to five slices of bacon, cooked and crumbled. Reserve one tablespoon bacon drippings. One 10-ounce package of frozen spinach, thawed and drained, one 8-ounce container of cottage cheese, which is one cup, a quarter teaspoon of pepper, an eighth teaspoon of ground nutmeg, and one egg, beaten.

So to make the pastry, in a large mixing bowl, beat together the cream cheese and butter or margarine with an electric mixer until smooth. Gradually beat in the flour and salt. Knead the dough lightly by hand. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about three hours. You can do it for less. It’s just to hold it together.

And for the filling, in a medium skillet, cook the onions and garlic in the reserved bacon drippings for three to four minutes or until the onion is tender but not brown. Stir in the crumbled bacon, the spinach, cottage cheese, pepper and nutmeg. Let the mixture cool.

Next, we are going to roll out the pastry on a light floured surface, until it is about an inch thick. Using a three-inch biscuit cutter, cut out as many pastry circles as possible. Place one teaspoon of the filling on one half of the circle. Moisten the edge of the circle with the egg and fold over. Place the pastries on an ungreased baking sheet. Gently seal the edges of the empanadas with the tines of a fork. Brush the empanadas with the egg. Use the tines of the fork to prick a small vent in each, on the top of the empanadas. Bake in a 450 degrees oven for 10 to 12 minutes until the empanadas are golden brown.

Hope you will enjoy it if you try it. Thank you.

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