Here’s a good starter for an Indian feast, Samosas with coriander chutney. These little stuffed pastries are fried to a golden brown and work great for any finger-food occasions. Here’s what you’ll need:
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp semolina flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 tbsp oil
- 1/4 cup less 2 tbsp warm water
- 3 large boiled potatoes, peeled and chopped into small cubes
- 2 handfuls baby spinach (not traditional, but adds some good roughage)
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 2 chopped green chilies
- 1 tsp coriander powder
- 1/2 tsp garam masala
- 1 tsp mango powder (should be able to find it in an Indian or Asian grocer, also goes by Amchur), mango powder is tart, kind of like a powdered vinegar, you could substitute with a tsp of vinegar or lemon juice
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tbsp oil
- 1/2 cup frozen peas
- 1 big bunch of chopped Cilantro (coriander)
- 3 green chopped chilies
- 3 tbsp of lemon juice
- 1/2 inch ginger
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tsp oil
- 1 tsp sugar
Start by making your samosa dough. Mix the flours, salt, oil and water to make a smooth dough, adding more water or flour as needed. Knead the dough for 1-2 minutes to make the dough smooth and pliable. Set the dough aside and cover with a damp cloth, for at least 15 minutes.
Now for the filling, heat the oil in a pan over medium heat. Add cumin seeds, as they crack about one minute, add chilies and coriander powder, stir for several seconds. Add green peas cook until tender, stirring to ensure nothing burns.
Add the potatoes, crank up the heat to high and stirfry for around 4 minutes, mash and stir at the same time to get a nice filling consistency. Stir in garam masala, mango powder and baby spinach. Taste for seasoning, add more mango powder, salt or spices depending on taste. Leave to cool to room temperature.
Now to put everything together, this is the hardest part of the dish, but practice makes perfect. Knead the dough again for one minute, separate into four balls. In a cup, combine 3 tablespoons of water with one tablespoon of flour (used to stick the samosas together).
Working one semi-circle of dough at a time, use your finger, spread a line of the flour-water mixture around the outside of the dough. Taking the two corners along the flat side of the circle, fold them over each other and pinch together, this should make a cone shape (if this explanation is not good enough, look up samosa videos on Google to see visually how to do it).
Holding the cone as above, fill the dough with 2-3 tablespoons of filling, fold the top of the dough over to make a triangle shape. Squeeze and pinch sides to completely seal. Continue with rest of the samosas until all are made.
Now heat about 1 – 1 1/2 inches of oil in a pan on medium heat, or a deep fryer to about 160°C. While the oil is heating you can make your Hari Chutney. Put all of the ingredients in a food processor except the coriander and blend until smooth. Add the coriander a little at a time and blend adding a tablespoon or two of water if needed. Taste and adjust with extra salt, chili or lemon. Test your oil by holding one of your samosas half in, if it slowly bubbles the oil is ready. Having your oil at the right temperature is very important, if it is too hot the pastry will not crisp up and too cold it will become sodden. Drop in your samosas in batches, so as not to over-crowd the pan and fry, turning occasionally until golden brown, about six minutes. Drain on paper towel and serve with Hari Chutney, good times.