Golden brown and crisp on the outside and soft and spicy inside, samosas taste good when served hot with chutney

Crisp and triangular, or big and conical, samosas are a favourite throughout the country. Golden brown and crispy on the outside and soft and spicy inside, samosas taste good when served hot with chutney or chole. The traditional samosa is large, and its filling consists of mashed potatoes and peas. Adding nuts makes the filling richer and tastier.

Making samosas at home is not as complicated as you think. The biggest challenge is in mastering the triangular shape. The filling is basic. You can give this popular eatable a total makeover, by using your imagination, and inventing your own filling — minced mutton, chicken, macerated peas, paneer, or mushroom. You can also use readymade samosa patties which are available in the local supermarket.

Samosas are also popular in different combinations — with chaat or pav, topped with chole or stuffed between bread slices and flavoured with chutney. Health freaks would, however, prefer baked samosas. Here are a few easy-to-prepare recipes.

Mixed Vegetable Samosas

Ingredients

For making cones:

Maida: 2 cups

Ghee: half cup

Milk: 2 tbsp

Milk curd (for sealing the edges): a little

Salt to taste

For the filling:

French beans, carrot, cabbage, cauliflower (chopped and parboiled): 100 gm each

Chana dal, boiled: 100 gm

Onions, minced: 2 small

Tomatoes, diced: 2 small

Ginger, minced: A one-inch piece

Coriander powder: 2 tsp

Garam masala: quarter tsp

Turmeric powder: quarter tsp

Chilli powder: half tsp

Coriander and mint leaves, chopped: a handful

Pomegranate seeds, crushed: 2 tsp

Salt to taste

Oil for frying

Method:

Pour ghee into maida. Mix in salt and milk and knead into pliable dough with a little water. Cover the dough with a damp muslin cloth and set aside. Heat oil in a pan, and fry the onion and ginger until soft. Add salt, chilli, turmeric powder and coriander powder. Mix well; then add tomatoes and cook until tomatoes turn soft. Next, add all the vegetables, and cook on a low flame till the vegetables are done. Mix in dal, garam masala, pomegranate seeds, chopped coriander and mint leaves and remove from the fire. Keep aside for some time. Make small balls of equal portion with the dough. Roll out each ball into a circle, approximately 3 inches in diameter and on-eighth inch thick. Slice the round dough shapes into half and make into cones. Wet the edges of each cone with water or milk curd. Fill the cones with the prepared mix. Heat enough oil in a large-bottomed pan. Fry the samosas till they turn golden brown on a medium flame. Serve hot with sauce or chutney.

Mutton Samosas

Ingredients

For making cones:

Maida: 1 cup

Ghee: 1 tbsp

Milk: 1 tbsp

Milk curd (for sealing edges): a little

Salt: To taste

For the filling:

Mutton, minced: 125 gm

Onion: 1 medium-sized

Tomato: 1 large

Coriander leaves: A small bunch

Ginger: A small-sized piece

Chilli powder: half tsp

Turmeric powder: half tsp

Garam masala: 1 tsp

Hot water: 1 cup

Lemon juice or raw mango powder: 2 tbsp

Salt to taste

Oil for frying

Method:

Prepare dough as described in the previous recipe. Cover with a damp muslin cloth and set aside. Heat oil in a pan and gently fry minced onion and ginger. Add turmeric, salt and chilli powder. Fry for 2-3 minutes, then add tomatoes and chopped coriander leaves. Mix well, and then put in the minced meat. Let it sizzle for 5 minutes, then pour hot water on it. Bring it to a boil, then turn the heat very low, and cook for 40-45 minutes. Add garam masala, and dry mango powder or lemon juice. Slightly mash the meat, which should now be cooked and dry. Set aside for some time. Then stuff the samosas with the meat in the usual way. Paste the edges of the samosas with warm milk or milk curd. close them properly, and fry in hot boiling oil till crisp and golden brown. Serve hot.

Chocolate Samosas

Ingredients:

For making cones:

Maida: 2 cups

Ghee: half cup

For the filling:

Chocolate of your choice (grated or broken into pieces): 250 gm

Nuts, chopped: 100 gm

Fresh cream: half cup

Method:

Sieve the maida. Pour ghee into it and knead it into stiff dough, using water as required. Keep covered with a damp cloth. Mix chocolate, nuts and cream, and chill the dough in the refrigerator for some time. Divide the dough into equal portions and roll out into circular shapes. Slice into half, fold into a cone, and fill with chocolate stuffing. Seal the edges properly and refrigerate for some time before frying. Heat sufficient oil in a large-bottomed pan, and deep-fry samosas till golden brown on a medium flame. Drain on butter paper and serve.