Sweet Manchego Empanadas | culture: the word on cheese
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Sweet Manchego Empanadas

Sweet Manchego Empanadas

Jackie Botto
These hand pies are filled with the classic combination of membrillo (quince paste) and Manchego. Quince or apple preserves could also be used if membrillo is not available. The dough can be made ahead of time and frozen for later use.


  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 8 ounces 2 sticks cold salted butter, cubed
  • 3 eggs beaten and divided
  • 4 tablespoons cold water
  • 3 cups Manchego grated
  • 3 ounces membrillo
  • Demerara sugar for dusting


  • ►Add flour and sugar to a food processor and pulse to combine. Add butter to food processor and pulse until butter is incorporated. Add 2 eggs and water then pulse again until a crumbly dough is formed.
  • ►Turn dough out onto a clean work surface and knead to combine into a smooth texture. Shape into two disks, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • ►Heat oven to 375°F. Roll out one disk at a time on a lightly floured work surface. Roll dough out to ½-inch thick and cut out 3½-inch circles, cutting them as closely together as possible. (Overworking the dough leads to cracking empanadas.)
  • ►Place a slice of membrillo in center of each disk. Top with about ½ tablespoon of cheese. Fold disk in half, tucking in any stray filling. Press seam closed with fork tines. Brush egg over top of each disk and lightly sprinkle with demerara sugar.
  • ►Arrange on a lined baking sheet. Bake for 22 minutes or until tops are golden brown. Transfer to a cooling rack.

Jackie Botto

Jackie Botto is the food stylist and photographer for the Philadelphia cheese mecca, Di Bruno Bros. and the curator of their blog series, In the Kitchen with Jackie.

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