Ham & Cheese Empanadas

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ham-cheese-empanadas
Empanadas are a pastry turnover filled with various savory fillings and baked or fried. In this case, we’re smothering leftover sweet baked ham with shredded cheddar cheese to make these wonderful, easily handheld lunchtime treats.
Ham and Cheese Empanadas are a delicious way to use up leftover ham from a holiday dinner!

You’ll Need:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
8 ounces cooked ham, chopped
2 tablespoons bread crumbs
8 ounces mild Cheddar that has been shredded
2 tablespoons sour cream
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Pinch of black pepper
1 package empanada wrappers or 2 packages Pepperidge Farm frozen puff pastry shells, thawed

Egg Wash:
1 large egg lightly beaten, combined with 1 tablespoon water

Heat the oil in a heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the Onion and parsley, sauteing until the onion is translucent. Remove from Heat and transfer to a bowl. Add the chopped ham, bread crumbs, cheese, sour cream, egg and a dash of salt and pepper, mixing well.

Begin assembling the Empanadas by adding 2-3 Heaping Tablespoons of filling in the center of each empanada wrapper. Lightly moisten the edge of the wrapper/pastry with the egg wash mixture (use a pastry brush or your finger!) and fold the filled pastry in half and seal by crimping. If you don’t have a pastry crimper, crimp the edges with a fork that has been dipped in flour. Pierce each Empanada with a fork to allow steam to escape during baking, or they make Explode.

Refrigerate Empanadas for 30 minutes prior to baking or frying.

Preheat the oven to 375F- Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and place the Empanadas on it. Brush each Empanada with the egg wash and bake for 20-25 minutes. Makes 12

If you want to make a bunch and freeze them, prepare them as directed above, place them in a single layer on a cookie sheet lined with parchment or wax paper and place in the freezer until quite firm. Remove and them stack them in vacuum seal or ziplock bags or a resealable container with sheets of wax paper between each Empanada. Extend baking time by 15 minutes if they’re frozen when you start!

More Recipes for Leftover Ham:

© Can Stock Photo Inc. / korzeniewskidan

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Filled with an insatiable wanderlust to see the world, I've dedicated most of my life to saving money where I can so I can afford to see and do the things I want. I dug our family out of debt by reducing our grocery expense to less than $300 a month. You can too!

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