This is a hybrid of two of my favorite childhood foods...empanadas and devil crab rolls that are so popular in the Tampa Bay area. The crunch empanada breading surrounds a spicy, yet sweet, crab filling that begs to be dipped in hot sauce.
In a large skillet, saute onion, peppers, garlic, red pepper flakes in olive oil for 15 minutes over medium heat. DO NOT LET garlic burn. Add bay leaves, sugar, salt, and tomato paste. Stir, cover, and cook 15 minutes over low heat. Add crabmeat. Cook 10 minutes. Remove from heat and cool 15 minutes.
Fill each empanada disc with approximately 2-3 TBSP crabmeat filling. Brush disc edges with beaten egg, fold in half, and crimp edges with a fork.
Heat 2-3 inches of vegetable oil in a skillet to 325 degrees. Fry empanadas until golden brown. Remove from oil and drain on a paper towel.