South Indian Cookbook

Samosa Recipe with Meat Filling

Here is a favorite all across India. Although this Samosa recipe may not be original to South India, it can be very easily found with only a few minutes walk in any city in the south. Samosas are a light pastry filled with a savory filling like vegetables or meat. Once you have tried the basic samosa recipe have fun creating fillings to suit your taste. This can be served as light snack or an appetizer. It is often served hot with a mint, tomato or tamarind chutney.

1 1/4 cup plain flour
1/2 tsp Baking Powder (opt)
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 tablespoons butter or Ghee (clarified butter)
1/2 cup water

1/2 lb. Ground meat (either lamb or beef)
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 whole cardamom pods
1 medium onion cut into small dice
2 tablespoons oil or ghee
1 garlic clove, crushed
1-2 tsp ginger paste
1 Tbsp curry powder (see note)
Salt and Pepper to taste

For the pastry:

Sift the flour, add the salt, baking powder (if you are using it) and work in the butter or Ghee. Add in half the water and mix to make a soft dough. Add the rest if you need to. Kneed the dough until it is soft and pliable. Roll out the dough to about a 1/4 inch and cut out in circles. Moisten the edges with water; put the filling in the center and fold into a triangle.

Heat oil to 350 and cook the samosas until golden brown. Drain on paper towels. Serve with Mint or Tamarind chutney. If you prefer baking, place the samosas on a lightly greased baking sheet and bake at 400 for about 20 minutes or until golden brown. If you bake, the texture of the outside will not be as crispy as it should.

For the Filling:

Brown the meat and set aside. Heat oil in a skillet or frying pan and add cumin seeds and cardamom pods and cook for one minute. Add the onions and cook until translucent. Reduce the heat and add the garlic and ginger paste. Fry for 2-3 minutes. Add curry powder and 3 more minutes so that the flavors are incorporated. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Note: In Southern India, cooks would generally not use a prepackaged curry powder for a samosa recipe. Curry is really a mixture of spices and they usually would mix their own for each dish. I prefer to use a Madras Curry powder. You can often find Madras Curry powder locally, if you prefer, you can buy it online here.

Here is a samosa recipe with a vegetable filling:

Vegetable Samosa