Basics: Empanadas dough

Empanada is pastry or bread stuffed with fillings like meat or vegetables. I am pretty sure I have seen dessert empanadas before. And it reminds me of curry puffs which is very very similar. Empanadas or curry puffs – they are both street food to me. Both should be eaten when piping hot or it may get too oily and the pastry becomes too soggy for my liking. I believe that a good empanada starts from a good pastry.

empanada dough

empanada dough


ngredients (makes 12):

  • 450g of plain flour (chilled)
  • 11/2 tsp of salt
  • 210ml of chilled water
  • 1tsp of white vinegar
  • 1 egg
  • 50g of suet (I replaced it with shortening but you can use either butter or lard)


  1. Place the flour and the salt in a big bowl and mix well. Make a well and add vinegar, egg, chilled water and suet (grate it first)
  2. Mix everything well and combined. Then turn it out to a lightly floured table and start kneading for 3 minutes. Allow the dough to rest for 5 minutes and then knead again for another 5 or until it is soft, smooth and elastic. Wrap up in a cling wrap and place in refrigerator for at least 2 hours
  3. Take it out from the refrigerator and then roll it out to an approx. 30cm by 75cm by 2mm thick flat rectangle. Cut out circles of about 14cm diameter. Re-roll if you need to. You should get 12. It depends on the size of your circle
  4. Empanadas are ready for the filling

I found some nice tips on making empanadas here. Let me know if there are any tips we should be aware of :)

I’ve also asked around on twitter where I could find suet in Melbourne. You butcher may have it or according to @ajmckenn, it seems that there is packet suet at the supermarket in the aisle with breadcrumbs at Coles or Woolworths. I still had some shortening leftover when the girls came over to make mooncakes last year, so I used that instead. When I do know exactly and can confirm, this post will be updated with the information.