the continuing empanada hunt

Well, it’s been a while since I’ve posted an empanada update, so here we go. We’ve eaten a lot of empanadas, but these are the ones of note. Or at least, the ones that I remember.

  • Dorada empanadas, had in Corrients province in Posadas along the Río Paraná, famous for the dorada fish. It’s an amazing tasting fish (and a huge one) that this region is well-known for. This empanada was bought at a fish shop, with the owner wandering over after giving us our empanadas to hack off a slab of fish for another customer. There’s some kind of green as well as the fish.

  • Empanadas mandiocas. I though these empanadas in Paraguay would be filled with manioc/yuca, but instead the dough itself was manioc flour. The texture was like eating a deep-fried paste. This wasn’t a bad thing – it was soft and tasty with a nice meaty inside. Way more filling than a regular empanada as well – one was usually enough to fill you up for lunch.

  • Also had empanadas with palmitos, or palm hearts, in Paraguay. Palmitos are very, very popular here, despite the fact that they’re rather expensive, an odd fact in a country half-covered in palms. There weren’t just the palmitos, there was also a white sauce.
  • Empanadas salteñas. These empanadas are known all over Argentina for good reason. Salteño cooks cook potatoes in with the meat, making for a much more filling empanada and one filled with flavour. The potatoes absorb the spices and give the entire piece more zing. Add to that the hot sauce that comes with empanadas up here (and it gets hotter the closer you get to the Argentina/Bolivia border) and you have a great flavour party.

  • Also in the Jujuy region, we tried some new regional empanada variants, one of them becoming my favourite so far. First, with the pre-eminence of llama here, we had to order a llama empanada (a llamapanada?) which just tasted like a regular meat empanada. Didn’t have that zing that llama meat has. The other empanada, however, excited my empanada taste buds to new levels – goat cheese and quinoa. Lots of goats up here, so lots of cheese, and it works so well in empanadas. Yum.
  • Crossing into Bolivia, empanadas continued, though they weren’t usually called empanadas anymore. Instead, there were salteñas and tucumanas. The salteñas were very similar to the empanadas we had had in Salta – filled with meat and potatoes, though these were extremely juicy and always baked. Each street-side vendor had a little bowl of homemade hot sauce to add and it was HOT. Tucumanas, at least the ones I had, were fried and contained giant pieces of meat inside. Hot sauces were again available. A lot of people had these for breakfast here.

Whew! I think that’s got us caught up empanadically (sure, that’s a word) for now. Still searching for ever more empanada variants – keep an eye out for more!

3 responses to “the continuing empanada hunt

  1. great empanadas in the US also!
    you gotta check out Beto’s Comida Latina in San Antonio, Tx. I know…supposed to be Tex Mex…but you won’t be dissapointed!

  2. Hi man , next trip to Paraguay go to LIDOS BAR (Calle Palma y Chile) Asunción, Try Empanada frita de carne and empanada lidos chilena, also empanada de jamon y queso and empanada de choclo, I must say I am addicted 2 empanadas till I die… oh try it with the Special “PANCITO” and “Pulp” (OUR COKE)…

  3. Lidos Bar is the bomb bomb bomb!! Memories….

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