El Cubano Benedict from The Restaurant at The Raleigh
serves four (two empanadas per serving)
2 oz extra virgin olive oil
2-1/2 lb boneless pork shoulder, cut into small cubes
1 medium onion, diced
4 oz chopped garlic
2 oz “mojo” seasoning (preferably Badia)
16 oz water
8 oz sliced ham, cut into 1-inch squares
8 oz shredded Swiss cheese
4 oz freshly squeezed lime juice zest of 1 lime
1 Tbsp kosher salt
cracked black pepper to taste
8 pieces prepared empanada dough (preferably La Seltana)
1 bunch thyme sprigs
1-2 oz chiffonade cilantro (for garnish)
6 egg yolks
2 Tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 c unsalted butter, melted pinch cayenne pepper
pinch kosher salt
1 Tbsp Heinz yellow mustard
32 oz water
2 Tbsp white vinegar
8 extra-large whole eggs
For the empanadas: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large oven-safe skillet, heat extra virgin olive oil over medium-high heat. Add pork and brown. Add onion and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion softens, 5 to 7 minutes. Raise heat to high and add mojo seasoning and water and continue to cook for about 8 minutes. Cover with foil and place in oven; cook 45 minutes, or until pork is tender. Remove mixture from oven and add chopped ham, shredded Swiss cheese, lime juice, lime zest, salt, and pepper.
On a floured surface, place 2 ounces of pork mixture on empanada dough, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Brush edge of dough with water; fold top half over filling. Press edges to seal, then crimp firmly with a fork. Transfer empanadas to two baking sheets lined with parchment paper. In a bowl, beat egg with 1 tablespoon water. Brush empanadas with egg wash and top with thyme sprigs. Bake until golden brown, 30 to 40 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through. Remove and cool slightly.
For the mustard hollandaise: Vigorously whisk the egg yolks and lemon juice together in a stainless steel bowl until the mixture is thickened and doubled in volume. Place the bowl over a saucepan containing barely simmering water (or use a double boiler). The water should not touch the bottom of the bowl. Continue to whisk rapidly. Be careful not to let the eggs get too hot or they will scramble. Slowly drizzle in the melted butter and continue to whisk until the sauce is thickened and doubled in volume. Remove from heat, whisk in cayenne, salt, and yellow mustard to taste. Cover and place in a warm spot until ready to use for the eggs Benedict. If the sauce gets too thick, whisk in a few drops of warm water before serving.
For the poached eggs: Pour enough water into a 10-inch nonstick skillet to measure no less than 1-1/2 inches. Place over high heat and bring to 190 degrees. Add the vinegar. Gently crack each egg into a custard cup. Lower each cup into the water until it touches bottom and gently pour in the egg.
Cook for 4-1/2 minutes, adjusting the heat to maintain the temperature. Remove the eggs with a slotted spoon, one at a time, to a tea towel lined plate. Trim the edges of the white with the side of a spoon and serve immediately.
Serve empanadas with soft-poached egg, 1 tablespoon hollandaise, and chopped cilantro.