Vegetarian Empanadas with Spanish Rice

Sometimes I get creative and think of a title outside of the obvious for my food posts, and other times I do not.

Vegetable Empanadas with Spanish Rice from College Vegetarian Cooking
Serves 4-6

2 zucchini
2 potatoes
1 onion
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 15-oz can diced tomatoes
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
Salt & pepper
2 prepared piecrusts *they are in the frozen section and if you let them thaw out - they become your dough...quick & easy*

SPANISH RICE *honestly, I google'd "how to make spanish rice" for this recipe, lol*
1 cup brown rice
2 cups vegetable broth *see trick below :)
1 cup plain tomato sauce
3 cloves finely chopped garlic
1/4 of medium size onion
2 tablespoons EVOO
4 tablespoons of parsley

Empanadas Directions
Preheat the oven to 350F. Trim and discard the ends of the zucchini and cut into 1/2" pieces. Peel the onion and potatoes and cut into 1/2" pieces. Place the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the zucchini, onion, and potatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender. Drain the juice from the tomatoes and add them to the pan. Add the crushed red pepper and cook for 5 minutes, or until the tomatoes are warm. Season with salt and pepper.

Lay the piecrusts on a flat surface and cut each one in half. Spoon 1/4 of the vegetable mixture into the center of one half circle of dough. Wet your finger and dampen the entire edge of the dough, then fold the dough over and press all around the edges with a fork to seat. Cut a slit in the top of the dough and place on an ungreased baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining ingredients. Bake for 30 minutes*, or until golden brown, and serve immediately. *I needed to bake them for ~45 minutes total.*

Rice Directions (source)
Heat oil over medium heat. Add in the fresh garlic and onion. Saute for 1-2 minutes until softened. Add in dry rice. Stir for about 5 minutes, add in broth and tomato sauce. Cover and simmer for 45 minutes. Fluff and add parsley.

Vegetable broth tip: Remember how I used a vegetable bouillon in my cheddar cheese soup? Well, did you know that you can use them to make your own broth? The bouillons came 8 to a pack for $1.99. You can get 16 cups servings of vegetable broth from this one pack. Just a cool thrifty trick I recently learned. I'm sure the same rule applies for chicken and beef bouillons!

These empanadas were DELICIOUS! Not to mention I had A LOT OF THEM! I ended up having enough vegetable mix for 6 empanadas!!! With the rice side, one was more than filling. Bf tried them and gave them an 8 out of 10, he said he would eat them again. What would I do without my fearless guinea pig who verifies whether my cooking is a success or failure? Gotta love that guy!

I think I want to bake something this weekend...perhaps homemade pumpkin pie??? It is fall...I'm not sure what I'll end up doing but look for it next week!

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