A refugee from Venezuela, Magedda Arreaza has been living in NYC for just over a year and is developing a vegan Venezuelan restaurant concept called Casa Magedda. She takes the big, passionate flavors of her home country and makes simple, healthy food filled with flavor and love. —Magedda Arreaza
Test Kitchen Notes
I found out the hard way that not just any corn flour will do here. It has to be the pre-cooked kind. Harina P.A.N. brand was super easy to find (really, didn't even have to leave my block to get it), but it has to be pre-cooked or you end up with a soupy messy. Instant polenta would work too. —Stephanie Bourgeois
8 small arepas
1 1/2 cups
Harina P.A.N. (pre-cooked cornmeal flour found in the ethnic isle at most grocery stores. Other brands or instant polenta work too, but this is our favorite one)
Pour the warm water into a bowl. Add the flour, sesame seeds, chia seeds, flaxseeds, and salt. Stir gently to combine. Let it soak for about 1 to 2 minutes.
Knead by hand until a smooth dough is formed (when there are no lumps left) and let rest for 5 minutes.
Divide the dough into 8 balls, then shape each ball into a thin patty of about 1 cm. Similar to the shape and consistency of burger patties.
Heat the oil in a cast iron pan or non-stick skillet over medium heat, Place the arepas onto the frying pan over medium heat until it’s light golden brown and a thin crust has formed, about 5 minutes per side. Flip the arepas with a spatula and cook on both sides.
When all arepas have formed a crust, transfer to an baking tray and bake until cooked through and no longer doughy inside, about 20 minutes.