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Tuna Empanadas

with herb salsa


Preparation 30 MINUTES

Cooking 30 minutes

Recipe Andy Harris  and Hannah Meppem
Food Styling Hannah Meppem
Wine Matches Peter Bourne
Photography William Meppem
Styling Sabine Schmitz


Herb salsa
1 bunch fresh mint
1 bunch fresh coriander
1 bunch fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
150ml extra virgin olive oil

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 medium white onion, peeled and
finely chopped
1 small carrot, peeled and diced
1 small potato, peeled and diced
1 large tin tuna (135g), drained
60g green olives, pitted and finely chopped
1 ½ tbsp capers, drained
1 ripe tomato, grated and skin discarded
3 tbsp flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
1 tsp smoked paprika
½ tsp ground cumin
1 packet (24) wonton wrappers
vegetable oil, for frying


1 To make the herb sauce, place herbs in a food processor and blend. Add the vinegar, and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Slowly add the olive oil and blend until smooth. Transfer to a container or bowl until ready to use.

2 Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Sauté the onion, carrot and potato for about 15 minutes until softened, stirring occasionally.

3 Add the tuna, olives, capers, grated tomato, parsley, paprika, cumin and some salt. Stir mixture well and cook for a few more minutes. Transfer to a bowl to cool.

4 To make the empanadas, place a wonton wrapper on a flat surface and add 2 teaspoons of filling. Dip your fingers in a small bowl of cold water and moisten the edges of the wonton wrapper with your fingers. Fold wrapper over the filling, making a half-moon shape and pinch the edges firmly to close. Repeat process with remaining wonton wrappers.

5 Heat vegetable oil to 180˚C in a large, high-sided frying pan and fry the empanadas in batches for 5 minutes, turning them once or twice, until golden brown. Drain on kitchen paper. Serve immediately with the herb salsa.

Wine Match

2020 Shadowfax Minnow Grenache Mataro, Geelong, A$25

Empanadas typically have a meat filling but here it’s tuna – from a can. A gutsy pinot gris could work, as would a crisp dry rosé, but as the weather is still cool, I’ve opted for a light red. The Minnow is in the GSM mould but at the lighter end of the spectrum. There’s no shiraz in the blend but there’s a splash of carignan to add spice and some earthy flavours. It’s a juicy red with modest tannins that won’t challenge the paprika and sufficient flesh to work with the intense flavours of the tuna empanadas.