Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Potato Cauliflower Samosas

I decided the other day that it was time to learn to make a (fairly) healthy samosa at home

I'm a pretty big lover of Indian food. Since I had to give up going out for Thai, Indian food is now at the top of my list of happy foods.

I do a pretty great Chana Masala, and of course there's my family's signature Curry recipe, but I haven't yet tried to make any of the "quick bite" options, like pakoras or samosas.

With that goal in mind, I did some research, thought about some of my favourite samosa fillings, and then about how I could get away from deep frying the dough to make them a tad more healthy.

What I wound up with was delicious, spiced, half-pan-fried-half-baked potato cauliflower samosas that are a 2 bite delight to the taste buds!

Potato Cauliflower Samosas (yield 48 samosas)


  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup warm water
  • 2 tsp canola oil
  • 1 small onion, minced
  • 1/3 cup frozen peas
  • 1/2 head of cauliflower, chopped small
  • 2 medium potatoes, peeled, boiled and cut into 1" inch cubes
(You can half the below spices for a more mild flavour!)
  • 8 tbsp minced cilantro
  • 2" piece ginger, peeled and minced
  • 2 small hot chiles, stemmed, seeded and minced (jalapeno, thai spicy, or green indian will do the trick!)
  • 6 tsp lemon juice
  • 3 tsp honey
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 6 tsp garam masala
  • 4 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp cayenne
  • 3 tbsp curry
  • salt and garlic powder to taste
NOTE: I'm a big Garam Masala lover, but some people prefer cumin. If you're a cumin fiend, do 6tsp of cumin, 3 tsp Garam.


1) Start with your dough. Mix together the flour and salt. Then add the soft butter and mix in well with your hands until the dough starts to form into little balls. Add your warm water and mix with your hands until dough forms a ball.

2) Transfer dough to a work surface and knead with your hands until elastic-y (10 minutes). Once done, wrap it up in plastic wrap and put it in the fridge to cool. (1 hr to 24 hrs, any longer and you should really freeze)

3) Moving on to your filling. Peel and chop your potatoes and put in a pot of water on the stove, with a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, cook until potatoes are soft. Strain and rinse then set aside.

4) Chop up your onions and cauliflower (small pieces!). Place onions in a pan over medium-high heat along with 2 tsp canola oil and cook until soft and nearly browned. Add your spices (from cilantro down to garlic powder on the list) and cook (about 4 minutes). Add cauliflower and peas, along with 1/2 cup of water. steam until vegetables are soft. 

5) Add your potatoes to the mixture on the stove. mix everything together and give a quick taste test to see if you need to adjust any spices. When it's perfect, remove from stove and put aside in a bowl to cool.

At this point you have two options: 1) Start on the assembly, or 2) go to bed and finish the rest up tomorrow! I went for option 2 but it's your prerogative.

6) Take your dough and place on floured prep surface. Work until dough is warm in your hands (you may want to warm your hands up under the tap, or work with pieces of the dough at a time). When the dough is warm, separate into 24 equal  sized balls (about 1 1/2").

7) Take one of your dough-balls and, with a rolling pin, roll into a circle (doesn't need to be perfect) about 6" in diameter. then cut in half down the middle.

8) Roll one of the halves around the round edge to form a cone with the two round sides overlapping. pinch the bottom of the cone up and closed, then pinch the outside seam of the cone and close by smoothing over with a bit of water.

9) take a heaping spoonful of your filling and fill up the cone, trying to get a good variety of stuff in the middle! (inevitably, some of your samosas will just be cauliflower, that's ok) fold the top over and pinch to close, smooth with water then set aside. Repeat with other half, then steps 7-9 again. 23 more times.

10. Pre heat your oven to 350 degrees F (for optional step 11). Then, in a frying pan over medium-high heat on the stove, place 1 tbsp of canola oil. Once heated, add a small batch of samosas, cooking until both sides are browned (past golden, but not dark brown. Warm leather boot brown?) set aside. Repeat this step until samosas are all pan fried. 

11. (optional) Lightly brush the sides of your samosa triangle with canola oil (these will not have been cooked in the frying pan) Place your samosas on a cookie sheet and pop into oven for approx 15 minutes, turning the pan half way through. 

12. Remove and place on paper towel to soak up any excess oil. Serve warm with some of your favourite dipping sauce (I went tamarind and sweet and sour!) - refrigerate for a few days, or freeze to reheat as needed for a snack!

I know this is a lot of steps but it's a lot of assembly. If you want to go the more traditional route, you can always skip steps 10-12 and just heat up a boatload of oil over high-heat and deep fry your samosas. I wanted to go for a more "light oil, mostly baked" version, but that's just preference!

I'd love to hear back if you try this recipe! Either respond here or instagram to #cookwineandthinker or @laura_caity !