Vegan Venezuelan Arepas are easy to make, filling and absolutely delicious. Serve with spicy vegan jackfruit filling or black beans for a yummy meal.

Venezuelan Jackfruit Arepas [Vegan]

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Serves

4

Cooking Time

60

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Ingredients

For Jackfruit Filling:

  • 1 20 oz. can of Jackfruit
  • 2 tablespoons Oil
  • 1 Small Onion, finely chopped
  • 2~3 Garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1 Medium Poblano Chili, roasted and finely chopped*
  • 1 1/2 cup Low Sodium Vegetable Broth
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • 1/4 cup Cilantro, chopped
  • To taste Salt & Pepper

For Black Bean Filling:

  • 2 teaspoons Oil
  • 1 Small Onion, finely chopped
  • 1~2 Garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1 Medium Tomato, finely chopped
  • 2 cups Cooked Black beans
  • 1/2 teaspoon Ground Cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon Chili powder
  • 1/2~1 cup Water
  • To taste Salt & Pepper

For Venezuelan Arepas:

  • 2 cups Venezuelan or Colombian style masa harina flour (you'll need masarepa: precooked cornmeal.)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 2~2 1/2 cups Warm Water, more if needed
  • As needed Oil, for cooking the arepa
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Preparation

Make the Jackfruit Filling:

  • Rinse the jackfruit well, drain and shred the pieces with a fork into strands.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a heavy bottom pan, add the shredded jackfruit and cook till it is browned, stirring frequently. Remove onto a plate.
  • In the same pan, heat the remaining 1tbsp of oil and add onion, garlic and cook till they are lightly browned around the edges.
  • Add the roasted poblano and vegetable stock – scrape the bottom to remove the brown bits.
  • Add the browned jackfruit back into the pan along with the bay leaf. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to simmer and cook for about 15~20 minutes.
  • Jackfruit will be completely tender and would have absorbed all of the flavors.

Make Black Bean Filling:

  • Heat oil in a saucepan, add onion and garlic and cook till the onions turn translucent.
  • Add the tomato and cook till mushy, about 2 minutes.
  • Stir in the black beans, cumin, red chili powder, salt, pepper and water. Mix well and simmer for 5~8 minutes or until nice and thick.

Make Arepas:

  1. Combine precooked pan cornmeal with salt in a large bowl.
  2. Make a well in the center and add warm water to form a soft dough. Use your fingers to remove any lumps.. You want a smooth and soft pliable dough. Add more water, if the dough seems too stiff.
  3. Divide the dough into 6 equal portions and roll them into balls.
  4. Flatten the ball on your palm by gently patting it out. The resulting disc should be approximately 3.5"~4" wide and 1" thick.
  5. Gently place the 2~3 discs on a preheated, lightly greased skillet. Cook them for about 8~10 minutes on medium high until a crust is formed. Gently flip and cook for another 8~10 minutes.
  6. Transfer the arepas onto a baking sheet and bake in a preheated 350F oven for 12~15 minutes, flipping halfway through, until cooked through and golden on both sides.
  7. Arepas are ready to be sliced and filled.

Notes

Make the fillings up to 2~3 days in advance. Keep them chilled in airtight containers and bring them to room temperature before serving. Warm in the microwave before filling. Arepas are best served hot or keep them warm by loosely wrapping in foil. Reheat them on a hot skillet or warm them briefly in a microwave.

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