This blogging journey is quite an exciting one I have discovered (between all the dish washing and reheated food!). You post your first recipe (with quite a bit of courage) hoping that someone other than your mother will look at it and then one morning you receive an email from a television breakfast show inviting you to the show to make one of your recipes. So this past Thursday I found myself on the Expresso Morning Show, making those delicious Peanut Butter Caramel Slices which has been a hit since I posted them two weeks ago. A huge thank you to the crew at Expresso who made me feel so welcome and made it all look totally effortless!

Smoked Snoek Empanadas

This week’s recipe is a recipe from my favourite blogger, Jennifer Rodda who blogs at Milk and Honey. A few months ago she made these incredibly looking Smoked Trout and Potato Empanadas and since it was something I have never made before, I wanted to try it out and put my own spin on it.

Smoked Snoek Empanadas

I did not play around with the recipe too much but did replace the trout with snoek – a fish found here in the southern hemisphere from Namibia to Western Australia. South Africans mostly cook it on the barbecue with lemon and apricot jam and it is also a favourite smoked and served as a Smoked Snoek Pate. Snoek is on the SASSI green list meaning it has a well managed population and is not overfished.

Smoked Snoek Empanadas

As mentioned, apricot jam is synonymous with snoek on the barbecue so I spread about half a  teaspoon or so of the jam on the rolled out disks of dough before placing the filling on top. The recipe calls for lard in the pastry and I was surprised that it was not that generally available. I did however find a selection of lards and fats at Wellness Warehouse.

Smoked Snoek Empanadas

The pastry is really not a mission to make and I think these empanadas need some kind of a dipping sauce. A sweet and spicy salsa or even a sweet chilli sauce will work really well.

Smoked Snoek Empanadas

Smoked Snoek Empanadas


  • For the Dough
  • 450g flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • 50g lard
  • 200ml water
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • For the Filling
  • 2 potatoes,peeled and cut into 1cm dice and boiled until tender, drained and kept warm
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, mashed
  • 200g smoked snoek, flaked and all bones removed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 2 tablespoons chopped pickled jalapeno peppers (optional)
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
  • sea salt flakes
  • black pepper
  • Other Ingredients
  • 50ml apricot jam
  • 1 beaten egg
  • smoked paprika


  1. Make the Dough
  2. Combine the flour and salt in a large bowl.
  3. Add the lard and rub into the flour with your fingertips until it is evenly incorporated.
  4. Mix the water, vinegar and egg yolks in a cup.
  5. Add the mixture to the flour mixture and stir with a fork until it comes together.
  6. Bring the mixture together with your hands and turn it out onto a lightly floured work surface.
  7. Knead for a few minutes until it a smooth dough.
  8. Roll into a ball, cover with cling wrap and leave to rest in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  9. Make the Filling
  10. Fry the onion and garlic over a low heat until soft and slightly caramelised.
  11. Add to all the other filling ingredients in a large bowl and gently mix until combined.
  12. To make the Empanadas
  13. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C. Line a baking tray with baking paper. Set aside.
  14. Divide the dough into 16 even portions.
  15. Roll each portion into a ball and on a light floured work surface, use a rolling pin to roll each ball out into a 12cm or so diameter circle.
  16. Soften the apricot jam (pop in the microwave for 20 seconds if needed) and spoon about ½ teaspoon of the jam in the middle of the disk of each dough.
  17. Top with a spoonful of filling.
  18. Brush the edges with beaten egg and fold the dough over the filling to create a semi-circle.
  19. Press the edges together firmly and cut off any excess dough with a cookie cutter or pizza wheel.
  20. Lay the empanadas onto the prepared baking tray and brush with the rest of the beaten egg and sprinkle with some more smoked paprika.
  21. Bake for 20 - 25 minutes, until the pastry is golden and cooked.
  22. Serve immediately
  23. Adapted from Jennifer Rodda
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