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Authentic Pastellitos Recipe

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This recipe for Authentic Pastellitos, by , is from Feldberg Family Favorites, one of the cookbooks created at FamilyCookbookProject.com. We'll help you start your own personal cookbook! It's easy and fun. Click here to start your own cookbook!



1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening
3/4 teaspoons salt
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup warm water (approximately)
6 ounces boneless, skinless chicken breast or pork, diced
1/2 tomato, peeled, seeded, and finely chopped
1/4 cup minced onion
1/2 green bell pepper, cored, seeded, and minced
1/2 rib celery, minced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 1/2 tablespoons dried currants
4 pitted green olives, coarsely chopped
1 cup of water, approximately
1 to 2 tablespoons fine, dried breadcrumbs
2 cups vegetable oil for frying, approximately
1/2 cup sugar for dusting

Prepare dough by cut shortening and salt into the flour, using a food processor or pastry blender. Add enough water to make a soft, pliable dough. Wrap the dough in plastic, and let rest at room temperature for 2 hours.

Meanwhile prepare the filling by combining the chicken, tomato, onion, bell pepper, celery, tomato paste, salt, and pepper in a large non-reactive saucepan. Add enough water just to cover. Gently simmer until the chicken is tender, about 20 minutes. Drain the filling and reserve some of the cooking liquid.

Coarsely chop the filling in a food processor to the consistency of ground beef. Stir in currants, olives, salt, and pepper to taste. If the mixture is too dry, add a little of the reserved cooking liquid. If itís too runny, stir in the breadcrumbs.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out half of the dough as thinly as possible. Cut out 2-inch circles (use a glass rim). Roll out the remaining dough and cut out 1 3/4-inch circles. Gather the scraps into a ball, roll out and cut until all of the dough is used.

Assemble pastellitos by brushing the smaller dough circles with water and placing a small spoonful of filling in the center of each. Place the larger circle on top. Seal the dough circles by crimping the edges with a fork. (You can freeze them at this stage).

Before serving, pour 1-inch of oil in a heavy skillet or frying pan and heat to 350 degrees. Fry pastellitos until golden brown on both sides, 2 to 3 minutes total. Work in batches so as not to crowd the pan. Drain pastellitos on paper towels. Lightly sprinkle them with sugar and serve at once.

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