At the end of this month I will be attending the third annual Eat Write Retreat conference for food bloggers. I’m so thrilled to be attending this year, it will be a jam packed weekend of eating (duh), photography and writing workshops and networking with fellow food bloggers and brands.
Eat Write Retreat, got the party started a little early by mailing out a huge surprise box of goodies to all attendees. The box was full of goods to use for their culinary apps challenge and to all of our pleasure lots of new kitchen toys from OXO.
As soon as my box arrived, I tore into it with anticipation. Would I be given potatoes, raisins, figs or olives to work with? Tossing all the packing aside, I unveiled a big beautiful package of. . . California Raisins! Raisins! Well I immediately knew I was going to be challenged, I love raisins, but working them into a savory appetizer would take some thought.
Sorry Mr. Raisin but looks like Sir Pugsley claimed you as his own.
My mind circled through different savory raisin recipes, I could do my mom’s stuffed cabbage but that wouldn’t photograph well. Chicken salad with raisins is delicious but how to work that as an appetizer? Finally I figured I’d make some raisin crisps, I absolutely love them and it’d be fun to make my own. In the end though, I couldn’t get my first idea out of my head, I kept circling back to it and knew it had to be made. Empanadas traditionally have raisins in the filling and since they’d be a first for me too, it was meant to be.
I immediately knew my filling would be a combination of ingredients I was tossing around in my head and complemented these plump, sweet raisins. The dough was another story. Do you know how many empanada dough recipes come up when you search for it? A lot. In the end I referenced the dough recipe from girlichef.
Heather includes cream cheese in her dough, and explains that it was easy to roll out and the most tender and flaky she has ever had. I hate rolling out dough and I knew the added cream cheese would certainly make my life easier. Plus I must agree with Heather, the dough is outstanding and I’d eat it alone!