‘Samosa’ the versatile Indian snack is essentially crisp deep-fried dough, with a filling of ‘just about anything’ from potatoes and peas in its best known version, to other vegetables of choice and delicious ground meat fillings.
But today, I’ve taken a seasonal diversion on the regular savory Samosas, creating warm sweet Samosa bites, filled with cooked apples and cranberries flavored with an Indian touch of ginger, cinnamon and cardamom.
Known for their classic triangular pyramid shape and essentially made with simple dough much like a pie crust; Samosas are a popular store-bought and home-made snack across the Indian subcontinent, and are just as well-known in homes around Middle East Asia (have my eye on this interesting book on Asian Dumplings) and parts of Africa.
Over the years living in the US, I’ve come to prefer homemade dough (similar to Williams-Sonoma’s Samosa dough recipe, replacing oil with ghee-clarified butter/regular unsalted butter for a more flavorful crust) or store-bought pie crust for my Samosas, although wrappers specifically designed for Samosa are available online and in ethnic stores.
But irrespective of your choice of dough, an important part is to create a mouthwatering filling and get the Samosa shape just right…
So before I start on the recipe for my crisp Cranberry Ginger Apple Samosas, here’s a handy poem to help get the quintessential Samosa triangle sitting up just right on its bottom.
Make a circle
Cut it in half
Make a cone
Fill it up half
Close the flap shut tight
Sit the Samosa on its bottom
Pointing to the Ceiling
- 1 cup (½ lb. apple) Granny Smith Apples, cored and cut in small cubes
- 2 tablespoons dried cranberries
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 teaspoons orange juice
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon (pinch) ground cardamom
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar (regular sugar is fine too)
- 1/8 teaspoon (pinch) salt
- 1 sheet pie crust/samosa dough, store-bought or home-made
- 8 Samosa wrappers
- Melt the butter in a pan, add apples and cranberries. Sprinkle the orange juice, spices, sugar and salt; cook for 6-7 minutes till the apples have softened.
- Preheat the oven to 450F.
- On a clean floured surface, roll out the pie crust or Samosa dough to a 12 inch round and cut 4 circles in it, about 5 inches in diameter, and split each one into half.
- Make a cone with the semi-circle, using your fingers to press the end tightly closed, and fill the cone with a teaspoon of the apple and cranberry filling. Turn in the seam side of the Samosa base to cover the filling and crimp it shut using a fork or your fingers.
- On un-greased baking sheet, stand each Samosa on its covered base so it looks like a pyramid (if required, shift the filling around till the Samosa stands on its bottom).
- Bake at 450F for 15-17 minutes till the crust is golden brown.
- Serve warm Cranberry Ginger Apple Samosa bites as a dessert treat or a sweet serving for high tea.
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