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Albuquerque and it's Sustainable Food Impact

Albuquerque, New Mexico and it's Sustainable Food Impact is a lot more massive than many of us want to believe and is alive and well here. A few years ago although I was an advocate of using sustainable foods, and The Slow Food movement, while living in one of our nation’s largest metropolises I found myself engulfed with exotic ingredients and culinary preparation techniques, Plate presentations and rubbing elbows with who’s who in the culinary industry.

Chefs Garden
Chefs GardenPhoto by Dylan Rives

While being out of touch with the reality of the Food & Beverage industry, local farms, and the way that most of the people in our country really look at Chefs, not what we think that people want as suggested by marketing companies and the Food Network. I has come to my attention that New Mexico, like other parts of this country has it's own Regional Cuisine and that it should be explored in depth by foodies all over the world.

There are many artisanal and Farm to Table Restaurants avalable here, but we also mustn't forget those establishments that pay homage to sustenance through our region as well.

Regional Recipes:

Empanadas
Empanadas Recipe(em-pah-NAH-thahs)

The word empanada comes from the Spanish verb empanar, meaning to wrap or coat in bread. These delicious little pastries are made by wrapping a round dough pastry in half over a filling of meat, seafood, vegetable or fruits to make a semicircle and baked or fried. Empanadas are a delicious holiday tradition in many New Mexican homes.

Pumpkin Empanadas Ingredients:

Pie crust
14 oz or 1 can of pumpkin puree
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1/4 cup heavy cream
Pinch nutmeg
Pinch cinnamon
2 oz raisins (optional)

Directions:

Cut 6 inch circles with a cookie cutter from your favorite pie dough. Place 2 oz of filling in the center of each dough circle. Fold dough over like a big half moon, then crimp edges with a fork. Beat one egg in a separate bowl for "egg wash." Dip brush in egg wash and brush over empanada. Sprinkle top with coarse sugar. Bake at 315 degrees for 20 minutes. Time and temperature may vary depending on your oven.

Makes 12 cookies

Recipe courtesy of Flying Star Cafe flyingstarcafe.com

Download printer-friendly PDF of Empanadas Recipe