Honey-Braised Pork Cheek Empanadas with Wildflower Honey Chimichurri

Honey-Braised Pork Cheek Empanadas with Wildflower Honey Chimichurri



1 lb. - pork cheeks

1/3 tablespoon - kosher salt

1/6 tablespoon - ground black pepper

1/6 tablespoon - ground cumin

1/3 tablespoon - round ginger

1/3 tablespoon - ground clove

1 large - carrot

1 - yellow onion

1 stalk - celery

2/3 tablespoon - garlic, chopped

1cup - bourbon

½ cup - Wildflower honey

2 cups - chicken broth

1/2 cup - orange juice

¼ can - chipotle in adobo (7 oz can)

½ - red bell pepper

½ - green bell pepper

2 sheets - 9x11 pie dough

Honey Chimichurri Sauce

2 - poblano peppers

½ lb. - parsley, stems removed

1 cup - red wine vinegar

1 ¼ cups - Wildflower honey

½ tablespoon - ground black pepper

1 tablespoon - kosher salt

1 ½ tablespoons - garlic, minced

½ cup - olive oil


Emapandas: Rub pork cheeks with salt, pepper, cumin, ginger and clove. Rough chop carrot, onion, celery and garlic and place in bottom of roasting pan. Place pork cheeks on top of vegetables. Combine bourbon, honey and chicken broth and bring to a boil. Mix well so that honey is dissolved, then pour over pork cheeks. Cover pan tightly with foil and roast in 375-degree oven for 2 hours or until pork is very tender. Remove pork cheeks from pan and cool. Combine orange juice and chipotle in a blender and puree. Mince peppers. Shred pork and mix with orange juice mixture and minced peppers. Season to taste with salt, pepper and additional clove, cumin and ginger as desired. Thaw pie dough and cut into 3" circles. Place pork mixture in center of circle and fold over, pressing to seal tightly around edge. Bake empanadas in 350-degree convection oven or until golden brown; serve with honey chimichurri.

Honey Chimichurri Sauce: Roast poblano peppers and remove stems and seeds. Puree poblano peppers in food processor and add parsley. Pulse until well chopped. Add vinegar, honey, pepper, salt and garlic; puree mixture. While food processor is running, slowly drizzle in olive oil to form an emulsion. Adjust seasoning to taste.