Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Empanada Hut (Richmond, BC)

My first experience with empanadas would have to in elementary school, when I had to witness a classmate chomp down on his mothers homemade empanada. It was kind of a treat to be eating lunch at school - being that my mother was a stay-at-home mother, and that we lived so close to school.

On the rare occasion that I *did* have lunch at school, P, with his little chubby fingers, would nimbly remove what looked like pastry pocket stuffed with raisins, meat, onions, garlic and sometimes vegetables.

Perhaps it was evident even at that age that I was enamoured with food. "What is that?" I'd ask him, then proceed to watch him finish the whole thing. All the while, a lingering sweet-meaty-buttery odour emanated from the pastry shell.

Later on in elementary school, I'd do a project on Chile and the empanadas also came up in my research. I'd attempt to make empanadas in high school, but they didn't come close to what I remember my childhood friend P eating.

While we were waiting for dinner at Gingeri a couple weeks ago, Sherman had joked about going out to go get an empanada at Empanada Hut, which was also in Lansdowne Mall.

"Noooo!" I had said, knowing that we'd probably be splitting at the seams after dinner. But part of me wanted to go too - just to enjoy that piece of childhood.

I got my chance last week...after all, I work in Richmond, why don't I eat in Richmond?! I opted for a combo with my choice of two baked empanadas and a drink.

Naturally, I chose two different empanadas - chicken and beef. Empanada hut also offers a baked seafood empanada, and a number of cheese empanadas which are deep fried. In addition, I saw a sign for churros - for someone that made churros as my operations management (was it? someone correct me here.) project in BCIT, it was a tempting. BUT. My tummy can only hold so much food! And empanadas would fit the bill.

The beef empanada had a more "caramel" like flavour than the chicken - there were plumped raisins in the mix, along with a whole olive, hard-boiled egg, onions and garlic. The flavour was mild but definitely pleasing and satisfying.

The chicken empanada was similar to the beef, except with a cleaner flavour. Both empanadas were accentuated with a salsa that was supplied. I'd go back for more salsa. There was a nice hit of cilantro and lime that accompanied the empanadas beautifully.

And yes, the empanadas from Empanada Hut did emanate the same sweet meaty odour that I remember from my childhood. Perhaps I should ask if it was Mrs. G herself manning Empanada Hut? :)

Empanada Hut

#1065 - 5300 No. 3 Road [map]

Richmond, BC

P: (604) 273-9130

Empanada Hut on Urbanspoon

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