Easy Grilled Arepas – 3 Delicious Preparations Recipe

Easy Grilled Arepas – 3 Delicious Preparations Recipe

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Easy Grilled Arepas – 3 Delicious Preparations Recipe
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Arepas are corn cakes, resembling English muffins in shape and color. They are cooked in fat in a pan or griddle, baked in a hot oven, or grilled. These patties are staples in both Venezuelan and Colombian cuisines. I learned how to make them while staying with friends in Venezuela. We made them for breakfast and would eat them either brushed with butter or stuffed with cheese and meat. The kids packed these into small arepa purses to carry to school for a snack.

Arepas are made using masa arepa corn flour. This is not to be confused with masa harina or corn meal. Masa arepa is a pre-cooked and dehydrated white or yellow corn flour. Think of it as instant corn flour. Masa harina is white corn flour that is made from corn that has been soaked and treated with slaked lime to remove the corn husks. It is not pre-cooked and will not work for arepas. Likewise, corn meal will not work.

Don’t worry, most large grocery stores carry masa arepa. Specialty Latin markets also have this. If all else fails, you can order it online. It is extremely affordable and easy to work with.

I like to cook arepas on my George Foreman Grill. I make them plain for breakfast. I will make extra for lunch. I slice the extras open, and fill them with avocado and shredded leftover chicken. If I am feeding a group, I will make thinner patties, place cheese on top of half the patties and then place another patty on top of the filling to form a stuffed patty. I then grill them until the cheese has melted. These might be my favorite way to prepare arepas. We’ll go over all three preparations.

These delightful cakes or patties will form a crisp exterior and have a soft, chewy interior. The texture is one you will likely come to crave and will make these over and over. You can easily store these in the refrigerator in baggies and reheat them in a toaster oven or on your grill just before serving.

Arepa Dough Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups masa arepa flour
  • 1 TBS sea salt
  • 3 cups boiled water

Total time: 10Prep time: 10 – Serves: 6 people

Directions:

1. In a large bowl, mix the flour and salt together. Pour in the hot water and stir to form a soft dough. Set this aside for approximately 5 minutes to rest and cool down.

2. Proceed to the next 3 recipes for different ways to prepare and grill arepas.

Basic Grilled Arepas

Basic grilled foreman grill arepas

Ingredients:

  • Arepa dough prepared from top recipe
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil or coconut oil
  • Butter for serving

Total time:18 minPrep time:10 min – Cook time:8 min – Serves:6 people

Directions:

1. Preheat your Foreman contact grill to high with the top closed.

2. Wet your hands. Take a palm sized portion of the dough. Roll it into a ball. Then, form into hamburger shaped patties that are approximately 4-1/2” in diameter and 1/2” thick. Brush both sides of the patties with oil.

3. Place the patties, as many as will fit, on the hot grill and close the top. Cook for 7 to 10 minutes or until you see grill marks and both sides are golden brown. Repeat until all are cooked. Keep them warm on a plate covered with a towel or foil.

4. Serve warm arepas with softened butter or cream cheese. You can just butter the top, or slice them open and butter the interior. Eat them with your hands.

Chicken and Avocado Filled Arepa Sandwiches

Avocado chicken foreman grill arepas

Ingredients:

  • 3 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 2 TBS extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 1 TBS fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • Arepa dough prepared from top recipe
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil or coconut oil
  • 1 avocado sliced thinly
  • 1 tomato sliced thinly
  • Hot sauce or salsa verde for serving

Total time: 30 minPrep time: 15 min – Cook time: 15 min – Serves: 6 people

Directions:

1. In a medium bowl, combine 2 tablespoons of EVOO, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and onion powder. Place the chicken thighs in the bowl and toss to coat with the marinade. Set this aside for 30 minutes.

2. Preheat your Foreman contact grill to high with the top closed.

3. Place the chicken thighs on the grill and cook for at least 5 minutes or until the internal temperature of the meat reaches 165°F. Remove to a cutting board to rest.

4. Wet your hands. Take a palm sized portion of the dough. Roll it into a ball. Then, form into hamburger shaped patties that are approximately 4-1/2” in diameter and 1/2” thick. Brush both sides of the patties with oil.

5. Place the patties, as many as will fit, on the hot grill and close the top. Cook for 7 to 10 minutes or until you see grill marks and both sides are golden brown. Repeat until all are cooked. Keep them warm on a plate covered with a towel or foil.

6. Shred the chicken thighs with two forks, or slice it thinly.

7. Take the warm arepas and slice them to form a pocket, similar to pita bread. Fill the arepas with chicken, avocado slices, and a tomato slice.

8. Serve the filled arepa sandwiches wrapped in napkins with hot sauce or salsa verde on the side.

Cheese Stuffed Grilled Arepas

Ingredients:

  • Arepa dough prepared from top recipe
  • 10 thick slices mozzarella cheese, approximately 6 ounces (or as many as needed)
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil or coconut oil

Total time: 23 minPrep time: 15 min – Cook time: 8 min – Serves: 6 people

Directions:

1. Preheat your Foreman contact grill to high with the top closed.

2. Wet your hands. Take a palm sized portion of the dough and split into 2 portions. Roll each it into a ball. Then, form into hamburger shaped patties that are approximately 4-1/2” in diameter and 1/4” thick. Place a slice of cheese on half of the patties. Place another 1/4” thick arepa patty on top of the cheese and seal the edges with your hands to enclose the cheese.

3. Brush both sides of the patties with oil. Place the patties, as many as will fit, on the hot grill and close the top. Cook for 7 to 10 minutes or until you see grill marks and both sides are golden brown and the cheese has melted. Repeat until all are cooked. Keep them warm on a plate covered with a towel or foil.

4. Serve warm, cheesy arepas wrapped in napkins.

A very popular dish to serve arepas with is a steaming bowl of Venezuelan style black beans, better known as Caraotas Negras. Here is a good recipe. You can make these the day before you grill your arepas. Store it in the refrigerator and reheat.

Venezuelan Style Black Beans

Ingredients:

  • 2 slices bacon, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, seeded and finely chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 TBS brown sugar
  • 2 (15.5 ounces each) cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 3/4 cup water
  • Adobo seasoning to taste
  • 3 sprigs fresh cilantro, finely chopped
  • 1 TBS extra virgin olive oil
  • Queso blanco (white cheese) for serving

Total time: 35 minPrep time: 5 min – Cook time: 30 min – Serves: 4 people

Directions:

1. In a medium saucepan on medium-high heat, add the bacon and cook until the fat has rendered and the bacon is crisp, approximately 6 minutes. Add the onions, peppers, and garlic and stir together. Cook until the onions have softened and begin to brown, approximately 12 minutes, stirring a few times. Stir in the brown sugar until it dissolves.

2. Add the black beans and water and stir to combine. Add Adobo seasoning to taste. Bring all to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until the bean mixture thickens, approximately 10 to 15 minutes.

3. Add the cilantro and olive oil just before serving. Stir to combine.

4. Serve the beans in small bowls topped with cheese. Serve grilled arepas with the beans.



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