Pastel is our family favorite junk food. Actually not so junkie since I make at home, from scratch.
I guess it can be considered as a Latin version of the Japanese “gyosa”, it is very popular in Brazil, specially in Sao Paulo’s street markets.
You can use any filling, our favorite is beef, but it is delicious with cheese, mozzarella type, banana, apples, palm hearts mix, anything you come up or something you have in your pantry.
I used my pasta machine to get a thin dough, but a roller will do too.
We have it once a year normally, in the summer. Better to use an electric frying pan outside and adjust to the same setting you use for french fries. It cooks very quickly, make sure to have all them ready to be deep fried. Put it in, wait a few seconds, turn it around, a few more seconds, put it on paper towel to absorb the excess oil, and it is ready, golden and crisp!
It is a great appetizer and it goes very well with a very cold beer.

Unfortunately is not diabetes friendly…

for the dough you will need:

4 tbs oil
3 eggs
2 tbs of vodka
1 3/4 cup of water
1 tbs salt
2 1/2 cup of all purpose flour

Mix all the liquid ingredients and add to the flour and salt, working well until the dough is uniform but a bit moist. You might need to add either flour or water to get the right consistency, which should be not too sticky. I worked for about 4 min with the dough. Let it rest for 10 min.
If you are using a pasta machine, start with the wider setting and work your way through up to the middle setting, in my case was #4. I had some plastic film in place, sprinkled with some flour. I rolled the dough up in 4 rolls that can be kept in the fridge for p to one week.
I had two types of fillings: banana in slices and ground beef, browned with onions and spices, pepper is essential and traditionally olives are a fundamental ingredient of a real pastel! Chopped or whole.

You can make your pastéis (plural of pastel) in any size, I tried the big square ones but ended up with a rectangle. Not a fancy shape but delicious anyway.

Make sure to press a fork in the edges so the filling doesn’t come out when you’re in the frying stage. Sometimes it helps to moist the edges before you close them with some water.

Hope the pictures will help. Let me know if you need more information. I will be glad to help in this complicated science of making pastel from scratch! lol

Enjoy and thanks for stopping by!


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