Empanada Preparation: Season venison with salt and pepper. Place a wide-bottom skillet over high heat. When pan is hot, add the oil to the pan, followed by the venison. Sear on all sides and remove to a plate. Add the onion and apple to the pan and sauté until soft. Add the garlic and cook for a minute to soften. Stir in tomato and raisins. Cook for 5 minutes to thicken the tomatoes. Add the chicken broth, spices and bay leaf. Return the venison to the pan, bring to a simmer, turn the heat to low and cover. Cook for 2 ½ hours until venison is tender. Remove from the heat and stir in the chopped pecans. Taste for seasoning and refrigerate until cool.
Preheat oven to 400°F. Roll out the empanada dough on a lightly floured surface to 1/8” thick. Cut 4½” circles from the dough. Gather the remaining dough together in a ball and roll out once more. Cut more circles and discard any remaining dough. You should wind up with 24 circles. Place the circles of dough back in the refrigerator if the dough is too soft to work with. Once pastry is firm enough to work with, place several circles on a floured work surface, brush with the beaten egg and place a heaping tablespoon of the filling in the middle, bring the two edges together over of the filling. Starting from the middle and working out, press edges together with your fingers to seal them together. Once sealed, crimp the seal to form a wavy pattern. Set on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Brush the tops with the remaining egg and bake until golden brown, about 15 minutes.
Enjoy with a glass of Cakebread Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon.