July 07, 2009

Easy Empanada Squares - A Million Dollar Recipe!?

My sister, Kara, is in the running to become a finalist in the upcoming Pillsbury Bake-Off. They are doing things a bit differently this year and 10 of the 100 finalists are decided by the public. If her recipe makes it into the finals she will have a chance to compete for the $1,000,000 prize!


2 large naval oranges
1/2 cup golden raisins
1 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
6 slices bacon, diced
12 ounce package bulk pork chorizo sausage
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/2 cup jarred salsa
1 teaspoon smoked paprika, divided
1 Tablespoon Crisco 100% Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided
2- 8 ounce packages Pillsbury Crescent Recipe Creations Refrigerated Flaky Dough Sheet

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grate the zest from one orange, then juice the orange. Place 1/2 teaspoon of the zest in a small bowl, along with the juice and golden raisins. Toss raisins to coat, then set aside to soak. In another small bowl, stir together sour cream and remaining orange zest; cover and refrigerate. Cut the remaining orange into 8 wedges; set aside for garnish.
2. Heat a heavy 10-12 inch skillet over medium heat. Add cumin seeds and toast, shaking pan, until they become fragrant and lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Remove seeds and set aside. Add the bacon to the pan and cook until crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Add chorizo to pan and cook through, stirring to break up meat. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Remove all but 2 Tablespoons of the pan drippings. (If there are not enough pan drippings, add Crisco olive oil to make 2 Tablespoons). Add onions and bell pepper to pan; saute for 5 minutes, or until softened. Remove from heat. Drain the raisins, discarding juice and zest. Add to pan, along with cumin seeds, salsa, 3/4 teaspoon of smoked paprika, bacon, and chorizo.

3. Coat a 9-by-13-inch pan bottom with 1/2 Tablespoon of olive oil. Press one package of the crescent sheets onto bottom of pan, making a 1-/4-inch edge. Spoon chorizo filling into pan. Top with second sheet of crescent dough. Press edges together and crimp with a fork to seal. Brush top crust with remaining 1/2 Tablespoon of olive oil. Make several slits on top of crust. Bake for 22-24 minutes or until crust is golden. Remove from oven and let stand for 3-4 minutes. Sprinkle top with remaining 1/4 teaspoon paprika. Cut into 8 squares and place each on serving plate. Serve each with a dollop of sour cream mixture on the side, and garnish each with an orange wedge. Serves 8.


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