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Empanadas - Win for Burbank

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Just found an oddball "food find" in Burbank, of all places. Fresh baked empenadas in the back of a liquor store on one of the most non-descript Burbank streets you can imagine. It's one of those "this makes no sense" spots where you have two guys toiling over hot ovens trying to pump out trays of hot empenadas that compete for beef jerky or zag nuts from the adjacent covenience store.

And yes - they were good. Moreover, I saw them making a chicken milanese sandwich that made no sense for a spot like this. There was some sort of thick chimi-churri aioli spread over crispy french bread with super-charred, fried, chicken cutlets laid out on top.

Anyway, good for Burbank (who I think gets a really bad rep for food). Go pick up some epenadas (to go).

http://worldempanadas.com

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  1. What's the name of the store? I drive past this place on the way home every day. I'll have to stop by and check it out.

    1 Reply
    1. re: granadafan

      I'm assuming it's "World Empanadas" per the OP's link.

    2. Thanks for the tip -- I just started working in Glendale & might check this place out on my way home one evening.

      1. Sounds fantastic. Will definitely check it out next time I'm in the valley.

        1. this makes no sense but hey, if it works for Big Willie's why not for empanadas?

          I'll hit this up soon, either one my way to or from Costco...

          1. fullmix, we stopped by on Saturday early afternoon, after spending all of our wallet at Epicure Imports in North Hollywood. World Empanadas...what a terrific find!

            It is exactly where you said it was: right in back of the liquor store. The glass case was full of 7 or 8 different flavored empanadas: chili with chicken, ham and cheese, spinach and cheese, corn, beef and some others. I took one of each to go with very clear instructions to heat them in the oven -- no microwave because that would make them soggy -- at 350 for 10 minutes.

            Today I tried the chicken with chili pepper and it was delicious!!!! I love that it is baked and not fried. It was not at all greasy and the ingredients were clean and distinct.

            The owner was very nice to us and tossed in an extra one. For sure, I will return! And thank you, fullmix, for posting here on your great discovery!

            1. hmm...interesting. i used to go to the car wash across the st all the time, till they disallowed bringing your own bucket.

              1. i'm no expert on empanadas -- not even a talented amateur -- but i thought the empanadas were pretty o.k.
                the fella that works there is really nice. the crust was decent -- not too flaky, not too tough -- and the spinach and the beef fillings were tasty.
                the spicy chicken was not spicy at all and was...meh.
                the chimichurri was very vinaigrette-like.

                i don't think i would make a long trip for these.
                but, if i was in the 'hood, it's a good option.

                4 Replies
                1. re: linus

                  "i'm no expert on empanadas..."

                  Nor I, linus. Mostly, I have stayed far away from them because I anticipated a greasy mouthfeel...not so with these at World Empanadas.

                  I believe it was the owner who served us and he was very nice. Although the box of 7 or 8 empanadas that I purchased was not going to pay his water bill, he expressed a warm appreciation for our business.

                  1. re: liu

                    the lunch special of three plus pasta salad is a good deal, although the pasta salad was kinda boring and really garlicky.

                  2. re: linus

                    oh my god Linus we agree again.

                    Checked out this place today because I was in the area. Got 3 empanadas - southwest chicken, ham n cheese, corn. Came with salsa + chimichurri and a side of pasta salad for 6.75. Add a drink from the liquor store and lunch was about 8 bucks.

                    The empanadas all tasted fresh, but they weren't OMFG THESE ARE AWESOME. They were all just "ok" in flavor combinations. I straight up didn't like the ham & cheese - the combination made no sense to me and the parm made it overly salty. I did not care for the pasta salad (although I appreciate what they're trying to do) and would get the salad next time.

                    I might hit it up again if I'm in the area, and will try different ones. My current benchmark is "Johnny Pacific" in Winnetka, and Johnny Pacific totally destroys World Empanadas in deliciousness.

                    1. re: ns1

                      i'm telling you, at this rate, the engagement may be back on.

                      i went there again not too long ago, and, again, they were no more than merely fine.

                  3. How big are these empanadas? aka how many do I need for lunch?

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: ns1

                      There are some circular ones that are perhaps 3" in diameter; the others are the size of an adult fist.
                      Three different ones might make a nice lunch...with a piece of fruit!

                      1. re: ns1

                        the lunch special was enough for me and a good value. i probably could have eaten another but im enough of a slob as it is.

                        1. re: linus

                          Was thinking about buying a ton and freezing, but $7 for a frozen lunch is too much for "stocking up".