There are some seasonal fruits that you wait all year round to eat, and once they are ripe you need to have them in abundance. That is me with cherries. I’m just bonkers for cherries. I like them fresh, I like them in preserve form, I like them pitted, I like them in pie….I just love cherries period. I don’t even care if they stain my clothes when I’m eating them, I’ll take my chances.
I don’t know if you keep up with National food holidays but August 28th is National Cherry Turnover day and September 1st is National Cherry Popover day, so I wanted to celebrate a little of both with a Cherry Queso Empanada which is the Mexican version of the turn over. I made my empanada with puff pastry so it has the puffy feeling of a popover. I combined these two national cherry holidays and rolled them into my own. I took the already delicious idea of making an empanada sublime, by adding a thin layer of Ranchero® Queso Fresco to the inside, and drizzling the top in a Crema Mexicana-based icing. Wowsers…. They were spectacular! It will be very difficult to eat them any other way now. I almost felt like they were so special I should invite some friends over to share with, then I thought better of the idea and decided to keep them all for myself.
I used cherry preserves in this recipe with a touch of fresh cherries, but when fresh cherries are not available the preserves will be fine on their own. The beauty of this recipe is you don’t have to wait for either National Cherry day to enjoy because it is a hybrid of both and you can relish it anytime of the year. I intend to do just that.
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WHAT YOU NEED
- 1 – box puff pastry (2 sheets cut into 4 equal parts each-for a total of 8 squares)
- 8 – slices Ranchero® Queso Fresco (thin)
- 8 – tablespoons cherry preserves
- 8 – fresh cherries (pitted, and cut in half) (optional)
- 1 – egg
- 1 – tablespoon water
- 1/4 - cup Cacique® Crema Mexicana
- 1 – cup powdered sugar
HOW TO MAKE IT
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Line a cookie sheet with a non stick baking sheet.
- Take one square of puff pastry and fill the center with a slice of Ranchero® Queso Fresco, a tablespoon of cherry preserves and one cherry cut in half. Then take one edge and fold it over to create a triangle. Use a fork to enclose the edges.
- In a small bowl whisk egg and water together to make an egg wash. Then brush egg wash over the top of each empanada with a pastry brush.
- Bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
- In a small bowl whisk Crema Mexicana and powdered sugar together until combined to make an icing. Drizzle the icing over the top of each empanada.