Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

 Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

It’s been probably 11 years since we last went to Empanada Mama in Hell’s Kitchen and I did not recognize the place at all. At the time, it was a tiny spot (I believe the photo from their site below is how it was before), really crowded. Now, it is a fairly large restaurant serving more than just empanadas, but with still these delicious turnovers as the stars of the menu, with various options for the dough (wheat or corn), including one called “viagra”, that is not what you are thinking: it is apparently made of seafood (not sure the waiter gave me the right explanation...), and for the healthy conscious, there are some oven baked.

 Before - Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

Before - Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

 Now - Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

Now - Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

 Here is what we ate:

We started of with some guacamole with plantain chips. The guacamole was good and I liked the fact that they serve it with plantain instead of the regular tortilla chips.

 Guacamole and plantains at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

Guacamole and plantains at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

 Guacamole at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

Guacamole at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

 Plantains at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

Plantains at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

Then, we got a mozzarepa that is a sweet corn arepa filled with mozzarella we often eat at street fairs. It was good, deliciously sweet, but I admit that I was really looking forward for some burnt cheese, that is the best part.

 Mozzarella at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

Mozzarella at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

 Mozzarepa at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

Mozzarepa at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

We then got our empanadas in little bags with their name on it so we would know which one was which.

 Empanadas at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

Empanadas at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

The first one was the mushroom empanada, that was oven baked, filled with portobello, white mushroom, garlic, parsley and onions. This was very good, the mushroom being the star of the dish.

 Mushroom empanada at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

Mushroom empanada at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

 Mushroom empanada at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

Mushroom empanada at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

The second one was the cheese empanada, the cheese being mozzarella and the shell of wheat flour. That was also a good one, the shell was delicious and having lots of cheese in it.

 Cheese empanada at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

Cheese empanada at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

 Cheese empanada at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

Cheese empanada at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

The third one was the beef empanada, a Colombian style ground beef in a corn shell. The corn shell was interesting, good, but I admit that I prefer the wheat flour one (am I not sure they could accommodate a change of shell. Maybe...). However, the filling was fantastic: juicy, it was very flavorful.

 Beef empanada at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

Beef empanada at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

 Beef empanada at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

Beef empanada at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

Last was the El Ruben or the Reuben empanada, made with a wheat flour shell, shredded beef, sauerkraut, Russian dressing and Swiss cheese, a great take on a classic delicatessen dish. And it was really good!

 El Ruben or Reuben empanada at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

El Ruben or Reuben empanada at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

 El Ruben or Reuben empanada at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

El Ruben or Reuben empanada at Empanada Mama in Hell's Kitchen

This was a quite good meal, not pricey and quite filling, to the point that we skipped dessert (well in all honesty we had a plan for the afternoon involving a hot cocoa...). Empanada Mama is a good place for some comfort food and the various combinations they propose will satisfy the vegetarians and the non-vegetarians.

Enjoy (I did)!

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Empanada Mama - 763 9th Avenue, New York, NY 10019

 
Empanada Mama Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato