Using spices in the kitchen can really change the way you enjoy recipes, especially if you were used to bland foods. I enjoy making ethnic foods from various cultures at home because I am able to bring the different countries into my own home without even leaving.
Years ago I wasn’t really exposed much to Indian cuisine, but recently I have enjoyed it a lot even though I am not super spice tolerant. There are very tasty options that are mild in spice as well though, so anyone can try it out. One delicious Indian cuisine treat is the samosa, but generally they are deep fried. I prefer to try and not have fried foods often, so at home I thought to make them baked instead and still retain its crispy dough exterior. I roll out the dough thin enough and even make them into various shapes since I didn’t want to be so traditional. To have the dough get a nice browned color and crispy texture similar to being fried, I brush olive oil on the dough before it goes in the oven. The dough is a simple quick type of dough to make with just olive oil, water and flour.
With this recipe, I just used the potato and peas version, although I have seen meat versions of samosas. I didn’t have all the exact spices at home but had a blend of curry spice to use that has most of the traditional spices for samosas. Even when I don’t always have the exact ingredient list at home, I still try to attempt to make a recipe anyway and this one I can approve of as being quite yummy. You can also be surprised by how much spices and other ingredients like garlic, onion, and ginger can flavor a meal without having to add a lot of salt.
Have fun making it and don’t worry about getting your hands messy when making the dough.
Baked Potato and Peas Samosas
Servings: Makes about 9-12 samosas (depending on how large or small you want to make them)
Preparation Time: 40-45 minutes, baking included
For the dough:
- 2 cups flour
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- ~1/2 cup cold water, plus any extra to form dough
For the filling:
- 4 medium-large potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes
- 1 yellow onion chopped
- 1 cup frozen peas, thawed
- 1 Tablespoon grated fresh ginger
- 3 cloves of garlic minced
- 2 teaspoons curry powder
- optional: 1 green chili pepper (jalapeno) minced or 2 big pinches of cayenne powder
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil (1 for cooking, 1 for brushing the samosas)
- Preheat oven to 350ºF. Before making the dough, bring a pot of water to a boil to be ready for the potatoes. Add the peeled and cubed potato pieces to the boiling water and cook until soft, about 10-12 minutes. Drain the potatoes and leave them in the pot until later.
- In a bowl combine the flour and salt. Then slowly add in the oil and mix it in with your hands to form a somewhat crumbly mixture. Slowly add in water in increments, stirring each time to form a stiff dough ball that isn’t sticky. If you added too much water, then add a little more flour.
- Transfer the dough to a lightly floured table and knead for about 1 minute. Let the dough rest for about 10 minutes.
- Heat 1 Tablespoon of olive oil in a pan on medium-high heat. Add in the chopped onion and saute for 5 minutes until softened. Add in the cooked potatoes, ginger, garlic, curry powder, chili powder (or jalapeno) and salt and pepper to taste.
- Cook mixture for an additional five minutes and with the back of a spoon, lightly press or smash some of the potatoes.
- Add in the thawed peas and cook for 5 more minutes.
- With the mixture cooling, form the dough into smaller balls to roll out. Roll out each ball into a thin oval round shape and pull the edges out if you want to make a more rectangle shape. You can also use a square cookie cutter to make a square shape.
- Put a heaping tablespoon of the potato mixture in the center of the dough.
- Here you can fold it over into any kind of shape you may want, but I mainly took the edges and pressed them together at the top to form a sort of purse or dumpling type of shape.
- Pick up each samosa before transferring to a baking sheet, and brush all the sides and tops lightly with olive oil.
- Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve either with a tamarind or cilantro/mint chutney dipping sauce.