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Pork Carnita Empanadas

Pork Carnita Empanadas

Recipe: Sysco Houston. YIELD: 14 empanadas

5 oz. habanero sausage, skinned and minced
1 yellow onion, diced
2 jalapenos, seeded and diced
2 Tbsps. minced garlic
4 Tbsp. cilantro, chopped
1.5 lbs. prepared pork carnitas
5 oz. (1 bottle) Cholula green pepper sauce
1 ¼ lbs. smoked Cheddar, shredded

For the chili-lime pico:
8 Roma tomatoes, diced and seeded
½ red onion, finely diced
3 Tbsps. cilantro, minced
salt and pepper, to taste
3 oz. Cholula chili lime sauce

For the empanada dough:
3 cups flour
1 tsp. salt
½ cup cold water
1 egg
1 egg white
1 tsp. white vinegar
3 Tbsps. shortening
1 egg, beaten

1. For the filling: Pulse sausage and onion in food processor until minced. Heat sauté pan, add oil and sauté sausage mixture, jalapeno, garlic and carnitas. After five minutes, add cilantro and green pepper sauce. Stir together, incorporating well. Remove from heat and add cheese. Reserve in refrigerator until cool, about 1 hour.
2. For the dough: Mix dry ingredients in mixer with dough hook. Start mixer on low and add wet ingredients slowly. After a ball has formed, remove from mixing bowl. Knead until smooth and refrigerate at least one hour.
3. Remove dough from refrigerator. On floured surface, roll dough to 1/8” thick. Cut 5” rounds from the dough (recipe yields 14 to 15 rounds). Place a heaping spoonful of filling into the center of each round. On half of the dough round, brush rim with egg wash. Fold dough over filling, making a half moon shape. Use fork to press around the edges to seal. Fry at 350°F until brown (about 4 minutes). Empanadas can be wrapped tightly and frozen at this point.
4. For the chili lime pico: Combine tomatoes, onion and cilantro in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Add Cholula chili lime sauce and incorporate well. Place in refrigerator for at least 15 minutes before service.
5. To serve: plate two empanadas and cover with pico.

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