Monday, August 6, 2012

Baked samosas

No, not Mimosas or even Samoas, but tasty treats, nonetheless.  If you don't know what they are, samosas are an Indian food, like a little pastry pocket of goodness.  Traditionally they are fried, and deliciously so, but I chose a baked version wrapped in phyllo dough.

It was an interesting introduction for me this week into the world of fragile doughs.  I had never used phyllo before due to the fear factor.  And frankly, I don't find it to be very tasty on its own.  It was fun to hear what the kids thought it was: tissues, paper, napkins.  I was having a difficult time with handling it until one of the counselors, who was a chef before he became a teacher, showed me what to do.  Thank you!!!!

We made a baked vegetarian samosa using potatoes and peas.  Baking instead of frying makes them a lot healthier and tasted just as god.  I was happily surprised at how many campers really liked them, especially since most said they had never had Indian food before.

The spices added
The mixture before being added to the dough.

Baked vegetarian samosas 


2 onions, minced
1 tbsp coriander
1 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 pound potatoes, chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
1 10 ounce package frozen peas, thawed and drained
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper (or to taste)
1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
9 sheets phyllo pastry, thawed
olive oil

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.
In a large skillet over medium high heat, sautee the onions in a bit of oil until they are soft, about 6 to 8 minutes. 
Add the coriander, cumin and cayenne, and cook for another minute.  Add the potatoes and cook for an additional 6-8 minutes.  Remove from heat and add the peas and cilantro, stirring to mix well. Season with a bit of salt and pepper.
Stack 3 or 4 sheets of phyllo together, and slice into 4 even rectangles with a pair of kitchen shears. Or a very sharp chef knife. Continue with the rest of the phyllo, then cover with plastic wrap or a lightly damp towel.  Place a tablespoon or two of the potato and peas mix in a corner of the dough, then roll the corner towards the center. Fold in the left and right corners, then roll up again.
Place each samosa on a baking sheet, and lightly brush the tops with olive oil. Bake for 20 minutes, or until lightly golden brown.
Recipe was adapted from one I found on  
About a tablespoon of mixture on the dough
Fold over into a triangle
Brush lightly with olive oil to seal and to brown.

I think that I will write a separate post for the rice I made with my older campers.  It was so delicious that it deserves its own post!

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