Well, the story starts with myself and a couple of buddies headed out to get some Mexican food, there is a strip of road in Concord, California with quite a few Mexican restaurants lining it. Oddly, Mexican and Korean stores and restaurants. Anyway, we want something a little different and there is this mariscos place. Well, we do not speak a lick of Spanish, but, how hard can this be. Well, first off, it is a night club and we are there at 2pm, no matter, the owner will take the business. The waitress does not speak English, at all. Oh well, we order anyway, since we can read Spanish menu Spanish. I get these empanadas that are the best, and they have a cornmeal crust instead of pie dough. So good.
Flash forward 3 months, I am going to make them. Do I have a recipe? No. Should I have a recipe? Yes. No matter, I can do this. I make a dough consisting of corn flour, corn meal. AP flour, baking soda and a couple tablespoons of my BBQ rub. I also made some chorizo and prepared some chicken for the grill, gotta do at least some of this on the grill. Here is the part of dinner that worked.
Once these were cooked, I brought them in, shredded the chicken and crumbled the chorizo fatty. Perfect so far. The dough has rested in the fridge, it feels good, I think we are a go. I sauteed the meat with onions and some Hatch green chile salsa, let it cool and am ready to go. I get the dough patted out and fill the first one. Immediately it is apparent that the dough is too wet and will not hold it's shape. It is 5:30 and I want to eat, what to do, the oil is hot, the meat is ready, I have an idea, I will fry them up as corn cakes, and serve the bell pepper and meat over it.
This was a good save, I know they have a name in Mexico, but, for me, it was a meal saver. Sometimes the best (or poorly) laid plans require a cook to improvise.