The Role of Empanadas in Mexican Food Culture

Category: Diet Recipes

Empanada is a word, which means "wrapped in bread" in Spanish and these delicious little pastries are made by wrapping a round dough pastry in half over a filling to make a semicircle. Empanadas make tasty snacks at any time of the day and are popular throughout Latin America as well as in Spain.
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Empanada is a word, which means "wrapped in bread" in Spanish and these delicious little pastries are made by wrapping a round dough pastry in half over a filling to make a semicircle. Empanadas make tasty snacks at any time of the day and are popular throughout Latin America as well as in Spain.

Empanadas from Galicia to Latin America

Mexican empanadas are thought to derive from Galicia in Spain and they arrived in Latin America when the Galician colonists did. A Galician empanada is a large round or square pie, which is served in slices, making it a hearty and portable lunch for workers. Variations of this kind of portable snack include Italian calzone, Indian samosas, and Cornish pasties. Actually most cultures have a kind of "pocket" or meat pie type dish because they are handy to carry around.

Chicken, cod or pork loin are popular fillings for Galician empanadas and these are very popular in Latin America because there are plenty of Galician colonists living there. Both Argentina and Uruguay consider empanadas to be a national dish.

Empanadas, which have many different regional names, can be stuffed with poultry, meat, fish, vegetables, or cheese. You can also get sweet ones stuffed with cream and fruit. Ground beef sauted with different seasonings is a popular empanada filling. These delicious snacks are shallow fried, deep-fried or oven baked and they are a Mexican typical meal. Baked empanadas can be eaten hot, cold, or reheated but the fried ones are usually served hot.

Empanada crusts are normally made from water, wheat flour, salt and fat (butter, lard, shortening or margarine). The crust might be plain or seasoned.

Popular Mexican Empanada Varieties

Mexicans enjoy empanadas for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, as an appetizer, snack, or dessert. What a versatile treat they are!

Favorite Mexican fillings for these snacks include yam, sweet potato, cheese, fruit, vegetables, seafood, cream, meat, guava, and pumpkin. The dough might be corn or wheat based depending on the region in Mexico. In the Mexican Chiapas region, chicken or cheese empanadas are a frequent breakfast, supper, or snack food. In Hidalgo, the empanadas are especially famous.

If you are interested in Mexican food culture, these delicious pastry snacks cannot be overlooked and if you want to make your own Mexican dishes, you will find them fun and rewarding to create. Empanadas are especially good eaten hot from the oven and the whole family will love these tasty little Mexican treats. It is also possible, of course, to buy readymade frozen empanadas from the store but everyone knows the homemade ones are a hundred times better!

You can enjoy Mexican empanadas at any time of the day and they make a nice change from sandwiches in packed lunches. If you want to have a go at making the kinds of food Mexicans eat because you have enjoyed reading a history on Mexican food then you will definitely enjoy making these.

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Thank for sharing!