Indian Samosa


Preparation info

  • Makes


    • Difficulty


    • Ready in

      1 hr 45

Appears in

Silk Road Cooking: A Vegetarian Journey

Silk Road Cooking

By Najmieh Batmanglij

Published 2000

  • About

Samosas are sold throughout India at all hours of the day by street vendors. They are often served on leaves with a little cilantro relish and tamarind chutney on the side.



  • 3 potatoes (2 pounds), boiled, peeled and diced into ¼-inch pieces
  • ¼ cup oil, butter or ghee
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 large onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1-inch fresh ginger, peeled and grated
  • 1 hot green chili, seeded and chopped
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen peas
  • teaspoons salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • ½ cup chopped fresh chopped cilantro
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice


  1. To make the filling, heat the oil in a wok or deep skillet over medium heat, until very hot. Add the coriander and cumin, and cook for 10 seconds, until aromatic (keep a cover handy to stop any seeds from flying out). Add the onion and fry over medium heat for 15 minutes. Add the ginger, potatoes, chili, peas, salt, pepper, garam masala, sugar, cilantro, and lime juice, and stir-fry for 1 minute. Adjust seasoning to taste. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
  2. Use readymade wonton wrapper or make your own. To make the wrapper, mix the flour, salt and oil in a food processor until crumbly. Pulse and gradually add the ice water until you have dough that is almost together. Turn out onto a floured surface. Gather the dough and knead in the cumin seeds. Shape the dough into a long cylindrical shape, cover with plastic and allow to rest for 30 minutes.
  3. Divide the dough into 10 pieces. Roll out each piece into a 6-inch oval shape. Cut each in half.
  4. Using your wet thumb and fingers, shape each half-oval into a cone.
  5. Fill each wrapper with 1 tablespoon of filling.
  6. Wet the top edges of the cone with water, close the cone, press together and seal. Repeat for all the dough. Place samosas on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, separated from each other, cover with a dish towel and refrigerate until ready to cook.
  7. To cook the samosas, heat 4 cups corn oil in a wok or deep skillet over medium low heat (beware not to make the oil too hot, 330-375°F). Add 4 samosas at a time and deep-fry for 15 minutes, turning frequently until golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels (for readymade wrapper cooking time is reduced).
  8. To make fresh cilantro relish, puree 3 cups chopped fresh cilantro leaves, ¼ cup fresh mint, ¼-inch fresh ginger (peeled), 1 bird or serrano chili (seeded), 3 tablespoons lime juice, 1 teaspoon cumin powder, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon sugar, ¼ cup almonds or yogurt and ¼ cup water in a food processor. Adjust seasoning to taste and transfer to a small serving bowl.
  9. To make tamarind chutney, mix 1 cup tamarind paste, ½ cup pitted dates, ¼ cup water, ½ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon nutmeg, ¼ teaspoon ground cumin, 1 teaspoon sugar and 1 bird or serrano chili in a food processor. Adjust seasoning to taste, cover and allow to rest for 30 minutes. This chutney keeps well in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 weeks.
  10. Arrange the hot samosas on banana leaves or on a serving platter, and serve with the cilantro relish and tamarind chutney.