Pumpkin, Tomato, Onion and Garlic Corn Empanadas

Pumpkin, Tomato, Onion and Garlic Corn Empanadas

These bright and cheery empanadas are the perfect cure for the dark, rainy days of fall like we are experiencing right now here in Oregon. I had a fun time making these empanadas, adding herbs and spices to make them just right. They may also be made with a meat or seafood filling, but they are a perfect snack, vegan main dish or a side dish to a larger meal. 

This version was a big hit with my husband and son as well. They loved the pumpkin/tomato/onion mixture and the crispness of the empanada lightly pan fried in coconut oil. 

Empananadas also make a perfect party snack or appetizer and since these have pumpkin in them, why not serve them at your Halloween or Fall Harvest party! 

I hope that you enjoy some of these soon for a flavor explosion!! 

Pumpkin Tomato, Onion and Garlic Corn Empanadas: 

Makes 10-11 empanadas (double the recipe for a large appetizer dish) 

Empanada dough: 

11 ounces  masa made from masa harina (follow the instructions on the masa bag (mix + water) and weigh. 

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon onion powder

1 teaspoon oregano, crushed

1 teaspoon chili powder

1/4 cup gluten free flour mix

salt to taste

coconut oil for pan frying


olive oil

1/2 onion, finely chopped

1 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1 cup pumpkin puree

1 teaspoon oregano

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon chili powder


1. Mix together the masa, spices and herbs along with the gluten free flour mix. Add in a little extra water if the dough is dry. Set the masa aside. 

2. Heat a small frying pan and add in olive oil. Saute the onion and garlic on medium heat until the onion is translucent. Set aside to cool for 5-7 minutes. 

3. Once the onion is cool, in a medium bowl combine all of the filling ingredients. Adjust seasonings to taste. 

4. Make 10-11 small balls out of the masa mixture. Press them in a tortilla press to make tortillas that are around 3-4 inches in diameter. Put 1-2 tablespoons of the filling into the center of each empanada. Fold over and pinch the edges to close. 

5. In an electric skillet set to 375F, heat the coconut oil (I heated around 2/3 cup to 1 cup coconut oil) When hot, place the empanadas into the hot oil. Brown on each side until golden and crispy on each side. Remove with a slotted spoon to cool slightly before serving. 

Serve with salsa & enjoy!! 




Raspberry Pico de Gallo or Salad

Raspberry Pico de Gallo or Salad

Wow! Fresh raspberry season is here and it is one of my favorite berries & my husband's favorite berry of all time. We are so fortunate that we now have mature raspberry bushes in our backyard and can gather and enjoy lots of delicious raspberries day after day. I am now able to pick a whole bowl full every single day. It is such a wonderful thing. 

As a result, I was brainstorming recipe ideas for raspberries when my husband suggested a raspberry salsa. I had never seen one before, so I decided to gather up a few ingredients and give it a go. I love the marriage of the raspberries and tomatoes and the lime juice gives it such a tangy flavor too. 

To accompany the salsa I made some fresh tortillas with corn masa mix, salt and water. These triangles topped with the raspberry salsa make a great healthy snack or appetizer. We also had the discovery that since you leave the raspberries whole in this recipe, it tastes great as a salad or side dish. It may also be used to top grilled chicken or fish. I hope that you enjoy some of this salsa today and celebrate the bounty of summer! 

Raspberry Pico de Gallo: 

Makes about 2 cups salsa or salad

1 cup fresh raspberries

1 cup finely chopped grape tomatoes

1/4 cup finely chopped onion

1 large clove garlic, minced

Juice of 1 lime

3/4 teaspoon finely chopped fresh oregano

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1. Combine all of the above ingredients in a bowl and stir to combine. 

2. You may serve this salsa/salad immediately or let it sit in the fridge for a while for the flavors to meld. It is also excellent as a topper for grilled chicken or fish or as a lovely side salad. 

Coconut Polenta Appetizer Rounds

The Cheery Chef has revised this polenta cake recipe so it is gluten free and dairy free.Check out all of our gluten free recipes. 

African Chicken Peanut Soup

Delicious African Chicken Peanut Soup with Rice & Roasted Green Beans! 

Ah! It is fall and it is definitely soup weather! This is a delicious soup recipe that I have adapted to my tastes from a family friend. This lovely friend used to have us over during the holiday season and serve 2-3 soups along with salad for dinner. It was wonderful and it warmed us all up. 

I love this combination of flavors, especially the tomato and the peanuts. It is delicious, filling and makes a very healthy meal. I hope you enjoy it with your friends and family very soon. 

African Chicken Peanut Soup: 

4 tablespoons olive oil

2 chicken breasts, cut into chunks (I like to cook the raw chicken pieces with the onion and garlic, but you may add already cooked chicken as well) 

1 cup chopped onions

1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic

1 tablespoon curry powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1/2-1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (I leave this out because it is often too spicy for my son) 

6 cups of chicken broth (I use a gel boullion or boxed chicken broth) 

1 six-ounce can tomato paste

1 fifteen ounce can chopped stewed tomatoes

1+ cup chunky peanut butter (Sometimes I even add more) 

1. In a large pot over medium heat, heat the olive oil. Add the chopped onion and minced garlic. Add in the chicken. Cook until the onion and garlic are translucent and the chicken is cooked through. 

2. Add the curry powder, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes (if using), chicken broth, tomato paste, stewed tomatoes and peanut butter. Heat the soup through but don't boil it. Taste for seasonings. 

I like to serve this soup over rice in bowls and top with roasted vegetables. You may also serve it with a salad on the side. 

If you enjoyed this post, pass it on to a soup-loving friend!