The history of samosa traces back to their origins in Central Asia. These fried pastries with a savory filling gained popularity in various regions worldwide, including South Asia, the Middle East, and Central Asia. While the exact origin remains unknown, it is believed that samosas emerged in Central Asia and later traveled to other parts of the world through the historical trade route known as the Silk Road.
Here is some information about the history of samosa
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1. Ancient Origins
The earliest known written reference to samosas is in a 10th-century Persian cookbook called the “Adab al-Katibah”. The cookbook describes a dish called sanbusak, which is made with a dough of wheat flour and water, filled with meat or vegetables, and fried in oil.
2. Variations Across Cultures
The concept of filled pastry snacks exists in various cultures around the world, each with its unique twist. For example, the Latin American empanadas, the Central Asian samsa, and the North African fatayer share similarities with the Indian samosa.
Samosas quickly became popular in India and were adopted by the local population. They are now a popular snack food in India and are often served with chutney or yogurt.
3. Mughal Influence
The modern-day samosa as we know it was popularized during the Mughal era in India. The Mughal emperors and their culinary influence played a significant role in introducing and refining this delectable snack.
Samosas were introduced to India by the Mughals in the 16th century. The Mughals were a Muslim dynasty that ruled India from the 16th to the 18th centuries. They brought with them many Central Asian foods, including samosas.
4. Diverse Fillings
While the traditional samosa is filled with spiced potatoes and peas, the filling can vary widely based on regional preferences. Some variations include meat fillings, lentils, cheese, and even sweet fillings like fruits and nuts.
Samosas are a versatile dish that can be filled with a variety of ingredients. Some popular fillings include:
- Meat: lamb, beef, chicken, or goat
- Vegetables: potatoes, onions, peas, carrots, and spinach
- Cheese: paneer, cheddar, or mozzarella
5. Popular Snack Worldwide
The samosa’s popularity has transcended borders and is now enjoyed in various parts of the world. It has become a beloved snack in many countries, especially in South Asia, the Middle East, Africa, and even in Western countries with diverse culinary influences.
Samosas were introduced to the Middle East by the Arabs in the 7th century. The Arabs brought with them many Indian foods, including samosas. Samosas quickly became popular in Central Asia and are now a popular snack food in many Central Asian countries. They are often served with yogurt or a tomato-based sauce.
Recipe for samosas
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil, plus more for frying
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 potato, boiled and mashed
- 1 carrot, grated
- 1/2 cup peas
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/4 teaspoon garam masala
- Salt and pepper to taste
- In a large bowl, combine the flour and salt.
- Add the oil and rub it into the flour until it resembles breadcrumbs.
- Add enough water to form a dough.
- Knead the dough for a few minutes until it is smooth and elastic.
- Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let it rest for 30 minutes.
- In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat.
- Add the onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.
- Add the potato, carrot, peas, cumin, coriander, garam masala, salt, and pepper.
- Cook until the vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes more.
- Remove the filling from the heat and let it cool slightly.
- Divide the dough into 12 equal pieces.
- Roll out each piece of dough into a 6-inch circle.
- Place a spoonful of the filling in the center of each circle.
- Fold the dough over the filling and seal the edges with a fork.
- Heat the oil for deep-frying to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
- Fry the samosas in batches until golden brown and crispy, about 2-3 minutes per batch.
- Drain the samosas on paper towels and serve hot.