|(Photo provided by Manu Verma)|
Mrs. Manu: Samosa is one of favorite snacks across India. Any gathering and any get-together, all have samosa. It has a crispy outer shell in a triangle form, filled with mainly potatoes, flavored with different herbs and spices.
Chi: So, basically, samosa has 2 main parts: the crust and the filling. There are different versions and flavors of samosa, but the one that I tried here is the basic samosa. What is involved in making the samosa’s crust, Mrs. Manu?
Mrs. Manu: For the outer shell, we need all-purpose flour, add a little bit of salt, and a little bit of oil. Suppose we are taking one cup of flour, then we will use one tablespoon of oil, and then knead it hard, adding water. It should be solid enough to make round balls. When preparation for the outer shell is done, you put that dough aside.
Chi: When making the crust, attention should be paid to the texture of the dough. This depends on the amount of water you use. The dough shouldn’t be too soft, as too much moisture in the dough will create tiny air bubbles in the crust and prevent the samosas from being crunchy.
Mrs. Manu: Now for the filling, we need to have boiled potatoes - mashed, boiled potatoes. After mashing the boiled potatoes, we take a little of oil in the pan, and add cumin seeds. As cumin seeds start tempering or sparkling, add chopped onions, fried a little bit with garlic, ginger, and add coriander seed powder, also add gala masala powder, half a teaspoon or one teaspoon, two large boiled potatoes, mash and add it in. Add a little bit of turmeric, very little, not too much, turmeric powder for the color and flavor. Then you add potatoes and you fry it together. Fry it with the onion and mashed potatoes. After it is fried, add salt to taste, and in the end, spread chopped coriander leaves. If you want chilli, you add green chilli, if you want red chilli powder, do it according to your taste. The filling is done.
Chi: Oh, the key to special flavor of samosa is the combination of different spices in one samosa, namely: garlic, ginger, coriander seed powder, gala masala powder, turmeric and chilli. When the dough and the filling are ready, it’s time to shape the samosa. Make it into small ball by rolling some dough in the palm, make it a round shape, cut it in half and join the two edges with some water to seal it. The final step is to fry it.
Mrs. Manu: Now we boil oil, bring it to heat, and fry it until it turns golden brown and it turns crispy. Take it out of the oil, and it’s ready to serve. You can serve it with tomato sauce or you can serve it with coriander chutney.
Chi: As far as I know, chutneys are basic staple sauces in Indian cuisine. You have different kinds of chutney. What is coriander chutney?
Mrs. Manu: Coriander chutney is simple. Put everything in a blender, chopped coriander, garlic, salt, lemon, chilli, and a little water, blended together. It’s a little bit thick.
Chi: Different parts of India have different flavors of samosa. The flavors may change from cashew nuts, peanuts, to mixed vegetables. This is also a nice recipe for any vegan. Thanks Mrs. Manu for your special insight into Indian food. Good bye for now.