In the 'Perfect Pies' episode of Perfect, Valentine Warner serves up this Latin American-inspired recipe.


  • 400g Minced beef (fatty)

  • A good pinch of Ground cinnamon

  • A good pinch of Ground cumin

  • A handful of Green Olives

  • 2 Hard boiled eggs

  • 2 Red onions

  • A handful of Raisins

  • 2 red bell peppers

  • A bunch of curly parsley

  • A good pinch of red chilli flakes

  • A good pinch of demerera sugar

  • A glug of olive oil

  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • For the pastry (Pls can we get some empanada wrappers, too):

  • 400g/14oz plain flour

  • 2 tsp salt

  • 80g/3oz butter, chilled, cut into cubes

  • 200ml/7fl oz warm water

  • 1 medium free-range egg, beaten

  • Empanada wrappers

  • Serve with Cerveza Quilmes (Argentinean beer)


  • For the filling::

  • 1.

    Fry the onion and peppers in a pan until softened with a little oil, add the mince and brown then add the remaining ingredients - apart from the egg and fry for a couple of minutes until all cooked, leave to cool then grate in the egg

  • For the pastry::

  • 1.

    Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl and add the salt.

  • 2.

    Add the butter and, using your hands, rub through the flour until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add the water, stirring round the inside of the bowl with a table knife until the mixture comes together as a dough

  • 3.

    Transfer the dough to a floured work surface and knead for two minutes, until it becomes smooth. Wrap the dough in cling film and leave in the fridge to rest for 30 minutes to an hour. Roll the chilled pastry out on a floured work surface to 5mm thickness.

  • 4.

    Cut the pastry into five circles 22.5cm/7in in diameter.

  • 5.

    Place two tablespoons of the mixture into the centre of each circle.

  • 6.

    Brush the beaten egg around the edge of one half of each pastry circle. Fold over the other side and seal by pinching the edges together.

  • 7.

    Place enough vegetable oil into a large pan to come 5cm/2in up the sides.

  • 8.

    Heat the oil until a breadcrumb sizzles and turns brown when dropped into it.

  • 9.

    Carefully place the empanadas into the hot oil, two at a time, and cook them on both sides until a dark biscuit brown and cooked through. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain onto kitchen paper. Repeat with the remaining empanadas.

  • 10.

    Allow to cool and serve with the beer

Nutritional information

Nutritional analysis per serving (12 servings)

  • Energy 252kj
  • Fat Total 8g
  • Saturated Fat 4g
  • Protein 12g
  • Carbohydrate 30g
  • Sugar 2g
  • Sodium 347mg

Note: The information shown is Edamam's estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist's advice.

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• The empanadas can be assembled and frozen up to 1 month in advance. Freeze them, unbaked, on a parchment-lined baking sheet until firm, then transfer them to a resealable plastic bag.

• Use puff pastry if you can’t find the wrappers

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