Samosa with Tamarind & Green Chutney
*This is an updated post from my archives. Samosa was my second post, when I started this blog. I have come a long way since then and wanted to update the recipe and photographs. Finally made some samosas today and here they are*
Well…..does this snack even need an introduction?? The most popular, versatile and tasty SAMOSA!!! The crunchy shell with mouth watering potato stuffing…they are simply irresistible. In India we never really made samosas at home, just because they were available easily at every nook and corner. So it was a kind of routine for us, Appa (dad) would pick up piping hot samosas and bajjis (fritters) while coming home from work and we would gorge on them.
The potato filled samosas are the most popular ones. Nowadays many shops as well as home cooks come up with so many filling ideas for samosas. You can be as creative as you want with the filling!! This recipe here today is the most traditional version.
After coming to US, we used to crave for samosas and would pick up some from the Indian grocery store, but they were not always great. We never make samosas at home in India and so I was quite apprehensive. I did a lot of research on the internet, and picked up a lot of details. While the potato stuffing is quite simple to make, it the outer shell that matters the most. If its not done right it turns out very soggy. The recipe given here is tried, tasted and approved very happily by my husband. So here is my research thesis for you all to enjoy!
The addition of corn starch, keeps the samosa crispier for a longer time. Samosas are best served right away, but I know that’s not possible at all times. So you can make you samosas ahead and warm them in your oven. Just place the samosas on a baking sheet and heat them for 4-5 minutes at 300 F. Reheating the samosas in a microwave will make them soggy.
Samosas are always served with fried green chillies. To make these chillies, wash and dry some Serrano chillies. Slit them slightly and fry them in some oil, about 1 Tbsp of oil for 10-15 chillies. Add a big pinch of salt and saute the chillies for 4-5 minutes on medium heat. The chillies will splutter a lot, so stay away from your pan when you are making it or use a splatter screen.
I have tried to include as many tips as I could, but please feel free to write to me if you have any questions.
Makes 18 medium sized samosas
For the Shell:
All purpose flour/Maida – 2 1/2 cups
Corn starch/Rice flour – 1/4 cup
Ajwain (carom seeds)/Jeera (cumin seeds) – 1 tsp
Oil/Ghee/Shortening – 6 tbsp
Salt – 1/2 tsp
Water – about 3/4 cup
Oil – for deep frying
For the Stuffing:
Potatoes (diced and boiled) – 3 large
Green chillies (finely chopped) – 1-2 no.
Ginger (minced) – 1/2 tsp
Garlic (minced) – 1 Tbsp
Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
Red chilli powder – 1tsp
Garam masala – 1 tsp
Cumin seeds – 1tsp
Coriander powder – 1tsp (preferably freshly ground)
Chat masala – 2 tsp (optional)
Lemon juice – 2 tsp
Salt – to taste
Cilantro leaves – 3 tbsp
Mint leaves (pudina, chopped) – 1 Tbsp (optional, but adds so much flavor!)
Frozen/ fresh Peas – 3 tbsp (optional)
Oil – 2 tsp
Kasuri Methi (crushed between your palms) – 1 tsp (optional)
- Mix the flour, salt, carom/cumin seeds, oil/ghee/shortening until the dough resembles coarse sands. The idea here is to coat each and every grain of flour with oil.
- Now sprinkle the water slowly and form a soft but really stiff dough. Even after using up 1/2 a cup of water the dough will seem dry, don’t get tempted to add more water.
- Knead the dough well for about 5 mins. It will be very stiff and a little difficult to work with. Don’t worry, its totally worth the effort.
Tip: The amount of water in the dough is very important, the lesser the better. If there is too much water in the dough, you will end up with too many bubbles on your fried samosas, which don’t look pretty at all!
- Use just enough water to bring the flour together. After that knead for 5 mins, sprinkling some water only when required.
- Keep the dough covered with plastic wrap or a moist towel and let it rest for at least an hour, and up to 2 hours.
To make the stuffing:
- Heat oil in a skillet and add the cumin seeds, saute for 30 seconds.
- Add ginger, garlic and minced green chillies and fry for about a minute, on medium heat.
- Add turmeric powder, red chilli powder, coriander powder and saute for 30 secs.
- Add in the boiled potatoes, boiled peas and salt to taste. Cook uncovered for 4-5 minutes.
- Sprinkle the garam masala, chat masala (if using) and kasuri methi (if using) on top and stir to combine. Cook for about 2 minutes.
- Finish with the chopped cilantro and mint (if using). Keep aside and cool to room temperature.
To make samosa shells:
- Make large lemon sized balls of the dough. It will be difficult to make a perfectly rounded ball, but don’t worry.
- Dust the dough with flour and roll it out thin, about 1/8 inch in thickness, into an ellipse as shown here. Don’t roll the sheets too thin, as it may be difficult to handle it afterwards and it may tear.
- Using a knife cut the ellipse to make two equal portions.
- Now place one of these sheets on the working board or on your hand with the circular portion facing you.
- Wet the edges and make a cone as shown in the pictures below.
- Now fill the cone with the stuffing and press it slightly. Seal the cone as shown here. (remember that the circular portion always faces you, only then the samosa will stand as shown).
Tip: Shaping the samosas all at once and letting them sit for a while will result in samosas that can stand very well, like the ones shown in the pic above.
- Deep fry the samosa till they turn golden all over. Please note that the oil should not be too hot and fry them on medium high heat.
- Serve with tamarind chutney and green chutney. (Scroll down for recipes)
Sweet, Spicy and Sour Tamarind Chutney
Jaggery/Brown Sugar/Plain sugar/Light Molasses – 1 1/4 cup
Tamarind paste – 1/4 cup (I use the dark brown tamarind paste, use more if you use the light colored paste or fresh tamarind)
Red Chilli powder – 1 tsp
Black pepper powder – 1/2 tsp
Cumin powder – 1 tsp
Salt/Black salt (kala namak) – to taste, about 1 tsp
Water – 1/4 cup
Dates – 5-6 (optional)
- If you are using dates, soak the dates in some hot water for 10-15 minutes. Grind the dates into a smooth puree.
- Combine the dates puree, and all the other ingredients in a saucepan and heat over low-medium heat until the mixture starts boiling, about 5-7 minutes. Adjust the salt to taste.
- Turn off the stove and keep aside. Remember that the chutney will thicken considerably as it cools down, so adjust the consistency accordingly while cooking. The amount of water mentioned in this recipe makes a nice and thick chutney. Cool completely and store in airtight bottles in the fridge.
This chutney will last for months in the fridge.
Cilantro/Coriander leaves – 1 large bunch
Grated Coconut (fresh/frozen) – 1/4 cup (optional, adds a nice texture)
Mint leaves – 10-15 (optional)
Green chilies/Serrano – 3-4 no.
Garlic – 1 large clove
Ginger (chopped) – 1 tsp
Tomato – 1 small (optional)
Lemon juice – 1 Tbsp
Salt – to taste
Water – as required
Combine all the ingredients in a blender and grind to a smooth paste. Use water as required to adjust the consistency to your liking. (Thaw the coconut if you are using frozen)
Store in the refrigerator, in an airtight container, for up to 3 days.