Ham, Cheese and Dates Empanada (Empanada de jamón, queso y dátiles)

The salty-sweet flavor combination from the three main ingredients of this recipe is surprisingly delicious while making this dish is an extremely easy process. Notice in this recipe the word empanada is singular as it outlines the way to make one big pan empanada, which is the other frequently seen method for making empanadas as opposed to the individual ones. Needless to say, the key to this recipe is in the puff pastry; I outlined here how to make these empanadas using ready-made puff pastry sheets for simplicity; you can use the cheese of your choice, in slices or grated but my favorite for this would be a Swiss type cheese.

| Yield: 8 servings | Preparation: | Baking time: | Total time: | | by:

empanada ham cheese dates

Ham, Cheese and Dates Empanada


* 2 Puff pastry sheets
* 10 slices of cooked ham
* 7-8 slices of Swiss cheese, or grated swiss cheese
* 26-31 dates, all carefully pitted and chopped
* 1 beaten egg (used as gloss)


1) Spread a sheet of puff pastry on a baking paper (sometimes the pastry and comes rolled onto a baking paper) and place on a baking sheet. Place the ham slices over the puff pastry in such a way that it leaves a half inch of free dough from the edge of the puff pastry.

2) Arrange the cheese over the ham.

3) Now is time to place the dates, laying them over the cheese, if you like this empanada to be sweet add more dates and if you prefer to leave it be more balanced 25 dates should be fine. Preheat the oven to 350 °F.

4) Lay the other layer of ham over the last layer of dates and cheese; now place the second sheet of puff pastry to cover it all. Slightly wet your fingers, fold back the dough around the edges of the empanada and press together the edges to seal it.

5) Beat the egg, and paint the surface puff pastry sheet with it all over, with a kitchen brush.

6) Pierce the puff pastry dough with a fork at the center of the empanada, to make a chimney to allow the steam to escape. Also pierce in several strategic places, again to help with the steam that will build inside.

7) Bake in the oven at 350 °F, until the empanada is nicely browned, or about 30 minutes. As soon as its ready take it out of the oven then let it cool down before cutting...