Spicy Sweet Potato Filling

I had every intention of following a recipe and making sweet potato empanadas. Every intention. But, after work and being pretty tired, I got a little lazy and decided to wing it. I did try making the empanada dough, and it came out ok, but it needed some definite chilling time to help make it flaky. The filling, however, I decided to just see what I had, and go with instinct. I sort of wanted pizza for dinner, and mildly hoped this would not work so we would have to get pizza for dinner, but I ended up really liking this. The filling also became quesadillas later in the week.

I stared with one sweet potato and did a small dice on it. I also chopped one shallot and a little garlic. I added all of these to a pan and cooked for a few minutes before adding about 1/2 cup vegetable broth. I cooked this, covered, for about twenty minutes while I tried to figure out the dough and tried to figure out exactly what I wanted to do.

To the potato filling I added some spinach, pinto beans and cooked just until the spinach wilted. I did end up making empanadas with this – a little cheese, a little dough – but I had too much dough for each one. But the filling.  Oh the filling was good.


  • 1 medium sweet potato
  • 1 shallot
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp. adobe sauce (from chipolte pepper)
  • 1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 bunch fresh spinach
  • Mozzarella cheese (as topping)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth
  • olive oil

Dice sweet potato into small pieces. Slice shallots and mince garlic. Rough chop spinach after cleaning well.

Heat a teaspoon olive oil in pan and when hot add garlic and shallot. Cook, stirring frequently, for a few minutes until shallot begins to soften. Salt and pepper lightly then add sweet potato. Cook, stirring for a few minutes, then add broth and adobe. Mix together and cover. Lower heat to low and cook for twenty minutes or until potatoes are done.

Uncover pan and return heat to medium. add pinto beans and cook 1 minutes, then add spinach and cook, stirring until spinach is wilted. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Combine with cheese and some dough like substance (tortillas, wonton skins, empanada dough, a pie shell, etc) and bake.


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