Samosas are a very popular dish in the Indian cuisine, typically filled with spiced potatoes, onions, peas, meat or lentils. In this recipe, we will show you how to make aloo samosas. ‘Aloo’ means potato. Indeed, the filling of our samosas will consist mainly of potatoes, combined with peas and will have a crispy dough casing. Besides, they are vegetarian and if you change the yogurt sauce with a plant-based yogurt or a chutney, you can turn it into a vegan dish.
Samosas are a popular street food in India, often accompanied with chutneys. Samosas with mint chutney is very popular. In our version, we will prepare samosas with a cucumber mint raita, which has a yoghurt base. It fits really well to the golden pastries.
When to eat Indian aloo samosas?
You can eat samosas as an entrée, an appetizer, a snack, for lunch or serve it as a party snack. Personally, we would propose to make samosas for a special occasion or during the weekend, because it takes time to prepare. Samosas are a true culinary highlight and the spices will let your mind wander to India. Besides, when preparing samosas for the first time, you should calculate more time to make this tasty dish.
Because it is such a great take-away snack, we think you can eat this dish any time of the day. This might be the reason, why it is not only such a popular snack in India, but in many regions around the world. We ate samosas in India and Africa as street food, and in restaurants and food trucks on festivals in the Netherlands.
The origin of the samosa
Janice ate her first samosa in Kenya. However, when we were in India, it felt like a traditional Indian street food. So what is the origin of the samosa? Many people think they originally come from India, but this is not the case.
Let us dig deeper into the history of the samosa. Originally, the first version of the samosa originated from the Middle East and Central Asia. From there, they made their way to Africa, Southeast and South Asia and many other regions of the world. Samosas reached India following the invasion of the Central Asian Turkic dynasties and through traders from Central Asia. In the Middle East they know the samosa as “sanbusak”, “sanbusaq” and “sanbusaj” and in Central Asia as “samsa”. In India, the samosa further evolved. After the introduction of the potato by the Portuguese in India in the early seventeenth century, the Indian population embraced the potato and created the Indian “aloo samosa”. Nowadays, you can find samosas in different shapes and sizes, depending on the region. Additionally, you can find them as triangles, as half-moon or cones.
Indian aloo samosas with cucumber & mint raita
- Dough roller
- Frying pan
- Hand mixer
For the samosa dough
- 170 g all-purpose flour
- 1 tbsp neutral vegetable oil
- 1 tbsp salt
- 1 tbsp cumin seeds
For the filling:
- 650 g potatoes boiled until tender; we used small ones, because we prefer their taste
- 80 g peas frozen
- 1 Onion chopped
- 1 tbsp ginger grated
- 4 tbsp cilantro minced
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 tbsp cumin seeds
- 1 tbsp turmeric
- 1/2 lemon
- 1 chili chopped
- Vegetable oil for deep frying
For the cucumber and mint raita
- 1 cucumber
- Large handful mint leaves finely chopped
- 300 g yoghurt Greek-style or natural vegan yoghurt
- 1 tsp rapeseed oil (or another natural vegetable oil)
- 1 tbsp cumin
- Chili powder
- Black pepper
- Sweet paprika powder
Cucumbere mint raita
- Peel the cucumber and cut it lengthwise into half. Remove the seeds with a spoon and cut the cucumber in small cubes.
- Wash the mint leaves and chop them.
- Mix the Greek-style yoghurt with 1 tsp of rapeseed oil in a bowl.
- Add the cucumber cubes and mint. Bring to taste with cumin, chili powder, black pepper, salt and sweet paprika powder.
- Put it to the fridge for at least half an hour and stir again before serving.
Making the samosa dough
- Mix the flour, vegetable oil, saltand cumin seeds in a bowl.
- Add 120 ml water and knead until you get a firm dough. Add a bit of more water if necessary; the dough should not be too soft. Cover the dough with a clean towel and set aside.
Making the potato pea filling
- Peel the potatoes and cook them in salt water until tender. Let them cool down a bit, so that you do not burn your fingers.
- Crumble the boiled potatoes with your fingers. Do not mash them, so that they keep the bite.
- Add 1 tsp of oil to a non-stick panand heat it. Then, add 1 tsp of cumin seeds and stir-fry them, until they beginto splutter.
- Add the chopped onions, 1 tsp of grated ginger and the chopped chili. Cook until the onions are translucent, about 2 minutes. Stir frequently.
- Then, add the minced cilantro, turmeric and the juice of half a lemon. Mix it and sauté for a few seconds.
- Add the crumbled potatoes and stir well.
- Add the peas, mix them under the potato mass and let it cook for about 2 minutes, until you have a dry mixture.
- Bring to taste with salt and pepper.
- Let it cool down.
Fold the samosas
- Form 7 equal balls from the dough.
- Roll out each ball one for one, so they do not dry out. Cover the others meanwhile. The balls should be about 15cm long and 10 cm wide. Roll the dough thin and evenly, but not too thin, so that it does not fall apart.
- Cut the oval circles along the long side into half.
- Fold one side over up to the center.
- Moist the edge of the fold with water.
- Flip over the other side of the dough and bring the two corners together. The edges should overlap a little(see picture below). Press with your finger on the edge, so that the two sides hold together. It is important that the two edges stick together well, so that they do not open while frying them. After pressing the seams slightly together,it helps to open the cone and press them together again. This way, they do not stick together with the lower part of the dough.
- Open the cone and stuff it with the potato pea filling.
- Apply some water from the inside with your finger and close the cone.
- Form the lower part of the samosa, so that it can stand by itself.
- Do the same with the remaining samosas.
Fry the samosas
- Heat the vegetable oil in a pot or frying pan. Fill the pot with circa 8 cm of oil.
- Wait until the oil is hot, and then add the samosas to the oil, one at a time. Do not add too many samosas simultaneously,because they can cool down the oil. Hot oil is important to obtain a crispy dough casing.
- Fry the samosas and turn them every now and then, until they get a golden-brown color.
- Put the samosas on a paper towel so that they can drain, then serve them with the cucumber mint raita.
We love Indian aloo samosas!
When preparing Indian samosas for the first time, it probably will take you some tries to get the good shape. This video is really helpful if you want to learn how to fold the samosas.
But even though your first samosa doesn’t have the perfect shape, it will still taste delicious!
Let us know in the comments, if you tried to make samosas before. What is your favorite filling?