Carrot Cake, Tamales and Savoury Empanadas

My freezer/pantry clear out has taken a serious turn and I can finally see the bottom of the upstairs freezer. And there are darned few things left in there so I’ve had to be creative.

Even the carrot cake was partially made with a freezer item, the last of a bag of walnuts from Costco. I DID have to buy a can of crushed pineapple though. And, killing two birds with one stone … carrot cake is on my cooking bucket list. I haven’t crossed anything off it in ages. The results were great. I used a recipe I found on Fridgg, even though I had several recipes stored away already on my hard drive. That ‘shiny, new’ tendency strikes again.

Pineapple carrot cupcakes with orange cream cheese frosting and a garnish of walnut halves

I made half the recipe and baked 12 large cupcakes with the resulting batter. Perfect for a single person or couple.

The tamales were made with the last of a bag of Maseca brand masa harina and dried corn husks from my storage area. Instead of water I used frozen ham broth from the picnic shoulder ham I boiled a while ago to flavour the tamales. I made a shredded mole chicken filling with poached bone in chicken breasts. The mole paste was a jarred brand, Dona Maria. The filling wasn’t quite as good as the red pulled pork I’ve used in the past but beggars can’t be choosers.

Destined for the freezer and quick meals

Tamales with a bit of mole sauce to drizzle over

Steamed tamales

The savoury Mexican chorizo and potato empanadas were made with home made chorizo and pie crust (Tenderflake lard recipe from the box) from my freezer. I got 2 dozen 5″ diameter empanadas from a bit less than 1 pound of fried chorizo and some limp potatoes from the basement, cubed and pan fried until brown and crispy.

Pan fried potatoes and chorizo filling

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6 thoughts on “Carrot Cake, Tamales and Savoury Empanadas

  1. We love empanadas. Our recipe came from a Chilean friend of my parents (they actually live across the hall from us in the apartment). Their recipe called for ground meat (usually a mix of beef and pork), onions, raisins and black olives. The dough was more bready than pie crusty. I usually make a giant batch once a year (last year it was at the cottage…maybe I’ll do it again!). I usually make them hors d’œuvres-sized, about 2 bites. When we were in DC, we ate at a Peruvian restaurant and they put cheese in theirs, so delicious!

    1. One of my pie crust recipes is doughier … this was a very tender, fall apart pastry recipe. One of these days, I’ll make a real empanada filling with the raisins and olives. For now, I just used leftovers from the freezer. 🙂

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