Are you looking for a simple yet scrumptious savory snack for your Halloween party? Then these Spooky Chorizo Hand Pies will be the PERFECT choice! They are easy and really fun to make, and are stuffed with a flavor-packed filling thanks to Cacique®! While my favorite thing about Halloween is the candy, a Halloween party just isn’t complete without some spooky savory snacks. So in the spirit of Fall and the holiday season, I made deliciously Spooky Chorizo Hand Pies, that are shaped like pumpkin heads for maximum Halloween effect!
These chorizo hand pies, which are really chorizo empanadas, are simple to make too. I used a homemade empanada dough for these Halloween pies, but you can use store-bought pie dough for this recipe instead. And the chorizo hand pie filling was the easiest of all to prepare – thanks to Cacique®! I used Cacique® Beef Chorizo to make the chorizo pie filling. It’s packed with spices and plenty of flavor, and I didn’t need to add a whole lot more to it. So it’s very convenient. With the addition of creamy oaxaca and manchego cheese, these Halloween chorizo hand pies are a treat!
I love using Cacique® products because of their quality and taste, and with Cacique®, authentic Mexican flavors with minimum effort are always guaranteed. I was introduced to Cacique® products when I first moved to the US, and wanted to make some delicious quesadillas at home. Since then I’ve been stocking up on Cacique® cheese, sour cream and meat products, because I never know when a quesadilla craving hits me!
These spooky chorizo hand pies are really fun to make as well! It’s a great Halloween food project to do with your kids too. You can get pumpkin cookie cutters, and use the mini triangle and round cutters to cut out the faces. Making the empanada dough is also easy. I used the same dough recipe that I used to make these Fish Empanadas, but made a larger quantity for this recipe. You can make this in the food processor or by hand. It’s important to use chilled ingredients so that the pastry is nice and flaky when baked.
The butter is blitzed briefly in the food processor, while making sure to have nice chunks of butter left. After the dough is brought together, it’s folded over a few times so that you get a wonderfully flaky empanada dough. I prefer to make this dough by hand, in a bowl, so that I can have bigger butter chunks in the flour. But the dough comes together just as easily in the food processor too.
The meat filling for these Halloween pies is made with Cacique® Beef Chorizo and minced pork. I added a little extra cayenne pepper and garlic, but since most of the seasoning and spices are already in the chorizo, the filling comes together quickly and easily.
The chilled empanada dough is first rolled out, and then I used a 4 inch pumpkin cookie cutter to cut out pumpkin shapes from the dough. Next, take the dough scraps and bring them together to form of a disc of dough again. Re-roll these scraps/dough disc and cut out more pumpkin shapes. I used the smallest cutters I owned to make the pumpkin faces. I used round cutters, triangle cutters and a small sharp knife to cut out the eyes and mouths. But go ahead and get creative with the faces, you can make happy, sad, scary faces, or your favorite emojis!
And be generous with the chorizo filling when you fill the pumpkin pastry. I wanted the filling to strain out of the mouth and eyes, as the hand pies were baking.These spooky chorizo hand pies are every bit as delicious as they look! The meat filling is spicy and scrumptious, and the oaxaca and manchego cheese lend a delightfully creamy, nutty flavor. These are guaranteed to be a hit at your Halloween party!
WHAT YOU NEED
- Pie Dough
- 16 oz AP flour (preferably chilled) (4 cups)
- 1 tsp salt, 1 heaped teaspoon
- 6 oz unsalted butter, chilled and cubed (1 ½ sticks)
- ½ cup chilled water (plus 2 - 3 tbsp more, if needed)
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
- Chorizo Filling
- 9 oz Cacique® Beef Chorizo
- 10 oz minced pork
- 1 tsp paprika
- ½ onion, finely chopped
- 2 - 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- ½ tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
- Salt to taste
- To Assemble
- Cacique® Oaxaca cheese
- Cacique® Manchego cheese
- Room temperature water (to seal the pie edges)
- 1 egg yolk, mixed with 2 tbsp milk (egg wash)
HOW TO MAKE IT
- Place the flour, salt and baking powder together in a bowl. Whisk to combine well. Add the butter, and rub it into the flour using your fingers (or in a food processor), until the flour-butter mix resembles coarse crumbs (or wet coarse sand), with some pea-sized butter chunks still left in the flour mix. If you used a food processor to mix the butter and flour, transfer the flour-butter mix back into a large bowl. Mix ¼ cup of the ice water with the vinegar and egg. Whisk to combine.
- Make a well in the middle of the flour mix. Add the water-yolk mix and use a fork or your fingers to distribute the liquid through the flour. Add another ¼ cup of water (in increments), until all the liquid is fully incorporated in the flour. Next, use your hands to knead the dough to form a dough ball. If the dough is too dry, add ice water, 1 tbsp (or less) at a time, up to 3 tbsp. The dough should come together to make a pliable dough that's not too sticky, but still soft. If it still seems too dry, dip just your fingers in ice water and without shaking off any excess water, knead the dough with wet fingers. If the dough is too sticky, then sprinkle a little flour and gently mix it in.
- Turn the dough out onto a work surface and flatten it into a rectangle shape. Fold the dough into thirds, to form 3 layers. Gently press the dough into another rectangle shape and repeat the folding one more time. Next, form a disc with the pastry dough, wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour. If you make the dough the day before and the dough is chilled, let the dough soften slightly at room temperature.
- Heat a large non-stick pan over medium-high heat. When the pan is hot, add the onions (with no oil), and let them soften slightly. Add the rest of the ingredients, and break the pork and chorizo meat into pieces while cooking. Add a generous pinch of salt. Mix to combine. Cook the meat for about 15 - 20 minutes until the pork mince is cooked through. Taste and add more salt if needed. Keep the pan at an angle to drain the excess oil (this is optional, but recommended). Place the rest of the filling in a bowl and refrigerate to cool down the filling.
- When you’re ready to make the pies, preheat the oven to 375°F. Line a baking tray or half sheet pan with parchment paper. Set aside until needed. Roll out the chilled pie dough on a lightly floured smooth surface, until the dough is about 3 mm thick. To ensure the dough doesn’t stick to the surface, lightly dust the surface with flour, and flip the dough over half way through rolling (this will help prevent shrinking of the dough and it will roll out better too). Again make sure the rolled out dough isn’t sticking to the surface before you cut the pumpkin shapes.
- Cut as many pumpkin shaped pieces (with a 4-inch pumpkin cookie cutter) from the rolled out pie dough. Re-roll the scraps and cut more pumpkin shapes. You should get approximately 30 pumpkin shapes. Create faces on 15 of the pumpkin-shaped cutouts. You can use smaller circle and triangle cutters to cut eyes, and a sharp knife to cut out rough mouths.
- On an uncut piece of pumpkin shaped pie dough, place a few pieces of shredded manchego cheese and oaxaca cheese. Then place a generous amount of the chilled chorizo filling over the cheese. Moisten the edges of the pie dough, and then cover this pie dough with a face shaped pie dough piece. Press down the edges to seal. The face shaped pie dough should easily stretch over the filling. Use a fork to crimp the edges.
- Place the hand pie on the parchment paper lined baking tray, and repeat with all the pies. When all the pies have been prepared, brush the top of the pies with egg wash (the pumpkin faces). Transfer the hand pies to the oven, and bake for 20 - 30 minutes, until the pies are a golden brown. Remove from the oven and let them cool slightly. Serve warm.