Tuna and Egg Empanada Gallega

Tuna and Egg Empanada

Empanada is a Spanish pie which is typical of Galicia in the north of Spanish and is also called Empanada Gallega. The empanada is traditionally filled with meat, tuna, vegetables, and seafood or shellfish and usually is served cold. It is a great way to feed lots of people and also good for picnics.

You can make the pastry from scratch or you can buy a packet of pre-prepared dough which has already been rolled out.

It’s also a great recipe to prepare in the wood-fired bread oven after you have cooked pizzas for lunch and the oven has been left to cool down a bit. If you prepare some larger amounts of the pizza toppings (e.g. onion, green pepper, red pepper), then you already have your vegetables prepared for when you are going to cook it later.

Tuna and Egg Empanada Gallega
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  1. 1 onion, finely chopped
  2. 1 green pepper, finely chopped
  3. 1 red pepper, finely chopped
  4. 240g tinned tuna
  5. 4 hard-boiled eggs, roughly chopped
  6. 1 egg, beaten
  7. 200ml tomato sauce
  8. extra virgin olive oil
  9. salt and pepper
  1. Heat some olive oil in a frying pan and gently fry the onion, green pepper and red pepper until soft.
  2. Add the tomato sauce and continuing frying until the mixture is quite dry.
  3. Flake in the tuna and the hard-boiled eggs and stir well.
  4. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Leave to cool.
  6. Meanwhile, unwrap the pastry and place the greasproof paper on a large baking tray.
  7. Place one of sheets of pastry on top of the paper.
  8. Spread out the filling to within an inch of the edges.
  9. Put the other sheet of pastry on top, matching up the edges.
  10. Using your fingers, create a rope-like effect by rolling over the edges.
  11. Brush the top with the beaten egg.
  12. Bake in a 180ºC oven for 4 minutes until the top is golden.
  13. Leave to cool before serving.
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Pizzas in the Bread Oven

pizzas in the bread ovenWe’ve now more or less perfected the art of cooking pizzas in the bread oven. I buy the dough from the baker’s in the village. One kilo of dough costs 1.50 euros and for a hungry person, 185g is generally the right amount of pizza. It’s always a good idea to do a couple extra just in case anyone wants seconds. The idea is for each person to assemble their own pizza.

Putting Pizzas in the oven

Putting Pizzas in the oven

The first step is to prepare all the topping ingredients: chopped onions, green peppers and red peppers, sliced mushrooms and garlic, shredded anchovies, ham, salami, etc., oregano, grated cheese and the tomato sauce.

The next step is to weigh and roll out the pizzas as thin as possible. The pizzas are rolled directly onto vegetable paper. The choice of paper is important as the pizzas are cooked on the paper in the oven. As the temperature of the oven is extremely hot, the paper must be able to put up with at least 400ºC. We had a bad experience with some greaseproof paper once and the paper welded itself onto the paper. Not a pleasant gourmet experience.

Roughly cut round the paper. The paper will burn when the pizzas are in the oven so it is a good idea to get rid of as much paper as possible.

Making Pizzas

making Pizzas

Smear the pizzas with tomato sauce and then add the toppings.

The ideal temperature for cooking the pizzas seems to be somewhere between 300ºC and 350ºC. They literally take three minutes to cook and should be turned half way through to ensure that they cook evenly.