To prepare the crust: Cut margarine into flour with pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Gently stir in cottage cheese. Sprinkle in water, 1 tablespoon at a time, stirring until all flour is moistened. Gather dough into 2 flat balls. Refrigerate, covered, about 30 minutes.
To prepare the filling: Brown ground beef in skillet with the next 6 ingredients; cool. (Ground beef mixture needs to be finely chopped.)
Assembly: On lightly floured surface, roll one ball of dough to about 1/4" thickness. Cut with 2" round cookie cutter. Spoon 1 teaspoon meat mixture in center of dough circle; fold over to form a half circle. Seal edges with fork. Freeze on baking sheets until firm; transfer to food storage bags. Freeze up to 2 months.
To Bake: Place frozen empanadas on lightly greased baking sheet. Bake in a preheated 400 F oven until golden brown (about 25 minutes). Serve immediately with salsa, if desired.
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