Empanadas, typical and delicious!
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North to South: a complete guide of Argentinian empanadas

The tango vibrates in Buenos Aires' streets, the asado (barbeque) is present and made every Sunday, the mate invites to union without age or social class requirement. In this select group of things that represent the Argentinian\'s identity, certainly empanadas deserve a place of privilege. Known for being an unbeatable mix of simplicity, taste and speed consumption, it is not surprising that they have become popular throughout the country. Each Argentinean region has been able to adopt empanadas as their own and providing their flavors to develop a unique version. Discover in this article the different recipes, from north to south, and why they became a mandatory menu for each reunion, meeting, encounter. The knife-cut-meat empanada is without a doubt a true Argentinean icon and the majorities' first alternative. Many others, however, lean towards the ham and cheese version. Even those who do not like meat have vegetarian alternatives such as corn and caprese.
The country has 23 provinces and, did you know that more than half of the them are empanadas experts? Each regional empanada has its distinctive touch and is named after the province that gave it origin. They are usually made with bread dough with different fillings and finished with braided edges (repulgue), which generally vary depending on the flavor. Get to know the ingredients and particularities according to each region.
  • SALTEÑAS: after the first bite of these empanadas you drop all the juice between your fingers. The most common is the knife-cut-meat empanada. They are small size, but full of flavor. It is cooked with: potatoes cut into small cubes; hard-boiled egg; ground chili; cumin; pepper; common and green onion; oregano, and salt. All its toppings are cooked in grease and can be prepared in a clay oven or fried. A one-way journey into the local cuisine!
  • JUJEÑAS: they differ from the others because they include peas. They can be cooked with cow meat and even llama meat. It also has common and green onions, potatoes, hard-boiled eggs, ground chili, paprika, olives, and salt. They are usually accompanied with a hot sauce based on ground chili and tomato.
  • TUCUMANAS: a culinary delight from northern Argentina! Unlike the previous ones, the Tucuman empanadas can be made of meat or, in some cases, of flank steak knife-cut. It does not have boiled potatoes or olives, but it has other ingredients such as common and green onions, paprika, cumin, pepper and salt. It is usually cooked in a clay oven and in some cases fried.
  • CHAQUEÑAS: the empanadas from Chaco province have the following fillings: river fish or knife-cut-meat, onion, hard-boiled egg, thyme, bay leaf, curry, tomato without seeds, peppers, olives. They are cooked in a clay oven and are exquisite.
  • SANTIAGUEÑAS: unlike the others, these empanadas are made of knife-cut-meat cooked in boiling water, to make it very tender. They have: peppers, sweet paprika, ground chili, green onion, hard-boiled egg, raisins, oregano, and cumin. A delicious flavor for the palate!
  • CATAMARQUEÑAS: they are cooked with cut-meat into small pieces, onion, hard-boiled egg, boiled potatoes, paprika, ground chili, bay leaf, olives, and salt. Once the filling is ready, the braided edges (repulgue) is closed and cooked in the oven.
  • RIOJANAS: they are the juiciest empanadas in the country. They are made with knife-cut-meat, common and green onion, hard-boiled egg, raisins, cumin, paprika, olive, boiled potatoes, ground chili, and salt. Be careful! You must always ask for them as "criollas" because the common ones are the arabs.
  • CORDOBESAS: these empanadas tend to be sweeter than the others. Its filling consists of ground meat, pepper, olives, carrots, raisins, hard-boiled egg, potatoes, onion, ground chili, and tomato (optional). The dough is painted with syrup, a true savor mix!
  • ENTRERRIANAS: these empanadas are made of meat (pork or cow) and have common and green onion, garlic, tomato, pepper, plums, hard-boiled egg, cinnamon, clove, cumin, ground pepper, paprika, sweet pepper and salt. Before baking, these empanadas are sprinkled with sugar to reach a unique bittersweet taste.
  • SANLUISINAS: they are the biggest empanadas and are usually baked in the oven. Its filling is made of pork, oregano, onion, and a very spicy ingredient: hot pepper. Only for those who challenge the spicy!
  • SANJUANINAS: these empanadas are made with meat and its filling is made of: onion slice, peeled tomato, hard-boiled egg, pepper, oregano, ground chili, olives, sweet paprika, and salt. They are usually cooked in the oven and their dough is typically soaked in white wine.
  • MENDOCINAS: they are big size empanadas and their filling consists in knife-cut-meat, pepper, olives, paprika, onion, hard-boiled egg, ground chili, oregano, cumin. And, before baking it, its dough is painted with egg.
  • PORTEÑAS: they belong to the province and Buenos Aires city and are cooked with minced meat, hard-boiled egg, olive, common and green onion, cumin, bay leaf, chopped pepper, and salt. They can be baked in the oven or fried, depending on your own taste. Before cooking them, they are also painted with egg, a delicious option!
  • PATAGONICAS: these empanadas come from southern Argentina and they are usually made of lamb or fish. In some regions of Patagonia, capers or white wine are added.

  • Besides knowing the amazing landscapes, culture and history, if you are in Argentina there is no excuse not to try a traditional empanada, as they are consumed and made throughout the country. Beyond the ingredients, with or without potatoes, big or small size, with meat or fish, fried or baked, salted or sweet, there is an ingredient that all empanadas have: a large portion of Argentine gastronomic identity. Are you going to miss it?


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