A couple of weeks ago, we went out for Indian food at one of our favorite restaurants
, in D.C. I'm trying to tick things off my bucket list, some new places to try and some old spots that I know I will miss a lot, this is definitely on my list. Their menu is always delicious and every item on it bursting with flavors, we ended up trying several different dishes and by the end of the meal we struggled to with our desserts (honestly, we could have skipped it but they sounded and were incredible). Strangely enough, we never ordered any samosas which then led me to remedy the situation with these guys!
I did something very different this time, I infused the pastry dough with fresh rosemary (though dried will work as well here) and also used coconut oil to create the dough's flakiness. The filling for this breakfast-themed pastry includes a mix of sweet potatoes, leeks, spinach, boiled eggs and a little more rosemary that spiced to create a delicious flavorful mix.
There are step-by-step photographs that M took while I prepared the pastries to cook which hopefully make things easier. This is also the way, I prefer to cook my samosas, I don't like to deep fry but simply baking them takes away from the texture of the pastry. So, I do a two-step cooking process where I lightly pan-sear the samosas on each side in a little oil and then bake them till they are cooked.
You can do what I do, prepare these for brunch and/or save the rest and reheat them in the mornings.
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon rosemary leaves, fresh or dried
1 cup leek, chopped
2 cups sweet potatoes, diced
4 cups packed spinach leaves, fresh
2 thai green/red chili peppers, thinly sliced
1 1/2 teaspoon kosher sea salt
2 large hardboiled eggs, peeled and chopped
1/2 teaspoon garam masala
1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan on medium-high for about 30-40 seconds. As soon as the oil gets hot, add the rosemary and stir for 10 seconds. Stir in the leeks and sauté for 2 minutes.
2. Add the sweet potatoes and coat them with the oil. Cook for another 5 minutes, until the sweet potatoes are just tender. Add the spinach leaves along with the chili and salt, stir and continue to cook until the sweet potatoes are completely cooked. This will take about 4-5 minutes. If the spinach releases a large amount of water, continue to cook until the liquid evaporates. Fold in the eggs and the garam masala. Remove from stove and keep the filling aside, until ready to use.
1 cup (5 ounces) durum / whole-wheat flour
1 cup (4 3/4 ounces) all-purpose flour + a little more flour for rolling out the pastry
2 tablespoons rosemary, fresh/dried
1 teaspoon sea salt
4 tablespoons melted coconut oil
6-7 tablespoons chilled water*** (you might need more)
1. Add all the ingredients from the flour to the salt in a food processor. Pulse a 2-3 times for 5 second intervals to evenly mix all the ingredients.
2. Add the coconut oil to the dry ingredients and pulse for 10 seconds. Sprinkle the 6 tablespoons of water over the flour and pulse the ingredients until they combine to form a ball dough. You may need to add more water to bring the ingredients together. Once the dough is formed, remove from the processor and wrap with cling film. Allow to rest for at least 60 minutes until ready to use.
a cup of water for sealing the pastry
See the step-by-step photographs photographs above (from top left to right and then bottom left to right).
1. Dust a clean pastry board or smooth kitchen surface with a little flour. Unwrap the dough and divide the dough into 14 equal parts. Mold each part into a ball, cover the balls with a damp cloth to prevent them from drying out while you are preparing the pastries.
2. Take one ball of dough and roll it out into a 5-6 inch circle, dusting with a little flour to prevent sticking. The edges of the circle do not need to be perfect as you will fold them over.
3. Divide the circle into two semicircles with a sharp knife or pastry cutter. Take one semicircle of the pastry in your hand, using your fingers bring the straight ends of the semicircle together and brush the straight edges with a little water and gently press to seal to form a cone.
4. Fill the cone with a generous tablespoon of the sweet potato filling prepared earlier.
5. Brush the open ends of the cone with water and then press gently to seal the mouth. Brush this sealed edge with a little water and then fold this edge once over itself to form a tight seal.
6. Prepare the rest of the samosas similarly and keep aside covered with a damp cloth until ready to cook.
cooking the samosas
1/4 cup olive oil for pan searing (you may need a little more or less)
1. Center a wire rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 350F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
2. In a medium sized non-stick pan, heat two tablespoons of the oil on medium high. As soon as the oil is hot add 3 samosas and lightly cook them on each side until they are lightly seared and become lightly golden brown. You may need to add a little more oil for searing the other side.
Transfer the samosas to the prepared baking sheets. Bake 7 samosas at a time for about 20 minutes or until they are completely golden brown. Repeat this for the rest of the samosas.
3. Serve hot with ketchup or sweet tamarind chutney. Store in airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week. You can reheat the samosas in a microwave or toaster oven before eating.
Semolina is the tinier cousin of bulgur and it resembles a fine sand. You need to lightly toast the semolina but be careful while doing this as it can burn fast, the photograph below shows how deep I let it brown and should give you a rough idea of what the semolina must look like. You can also use ghee instead of coconut oil (stick to the same amounts) in this recipe. The semolina itself is lightly sweetened but the golden raisins impart a pop of sweetness with every bite you take. The rose water is completely optional and I don't like nuts with this halva so I didn't add any but feel free to add a few mixed nuts with the raisins if you prefer to.
- What's for Breakfast, Today? by Marta is a spectacular collection of food and travel photographs that if you haven't come across already, you need to check it out! Her work is inspiring and tasty!
- Molly of My Name is Yeh whipped up a batch of pretzel shortbread cookies and then drizzled them with chocolate. I want to eat each and every cookie she baked.
- I'm on a breakfast kick these days and Kelly of The Gouda Life is responsible for this, reason being her blackberry sour cream muffins.
dragon fruit pudding
yields: 4 servings
1/2 cup water
1 sachet unflavored gelatin
1 dragon fruit
5 rambutans, peeled, seed removed, and finely diced
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 can lite coconut milk
1. Add the water to a small bowl and sprinkle the gelatin on top. Leave aside to allow the gelatin to bloom for at least 5 minutes. The gelatin will absorb the liquid and look like swollen translucent granules.
2. Add the sugar and coconut milk to a thick-bottomed saucepan and bring it to a gentle simmer on a medium-low flame.
3. Scoop the dragon fruit pulp into a bowl. Smash the pulp with the prongs of a fork.
4. Add the dragon fruit and rambutan fruit pulps to the coconut milk in the saucepan.
5. Stir in the gelatin and mix for about 1 minute. Pour and evenly divide the liquid into serving bowls or molds and refrigerate until the pudding is soft but firm to touch. This will take at least 4 hours. Serve chilled directly in serving bowls. If using molds, then place the outer surface of the mold in warm water for a few seconds to loosen, flip onto a clean plate, tap gently and remove mold.
2. Peel and dice the onion and add it to the hot oil. Cook the onion till it gets golden brown, this should take about. Smash the garlic and peel the skin off, the finely chop the garlic and add it to the onions in the skillet and stir for 2 minutes. Add the chopped and washed eggplant to the onion and garlic mixture. Cook for another 15 minutes till the eggplant is translucent. Transfer the eggplant mix from the skillet into a bowl and let them cool for 10 minutes.
4. Melt the butter in the same iron skillet on a medium flame. Remove the skillet from the gas. Make sure that the melted butter coats the surface of the pan completely. Pour the egg batter into the center of the skillet and place the four eggplant slices (that you cut and kept aside earlier) on the surface of the batter. and transfer the skillet to the heated oven and bake for 40 minutes or until the surface is golden brown and the center is cooked (test the center of the eggs with a skewer, if it comes out clean then the eggs are cooked). Remove the kuku from the oven and allow it to cool for 5 minutes before cutting and serving. It will also be easier to remove the kuku from the bottom of the skillet. Serve warm by itself or with plain rice and yogurt.
servings: 1 regular loaf tin
vegetable oil spray (canola)
a little flour for dusting the pan
2. Whisk all the liquid ingredients together and keep aside. Add the raisins and the pumpkin into the liquid mixture.
3. In another bowl whisk all the dry ingredients together. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the liquid ingredients with constant whisking at a medium speed.
4. Grease a baking tin/ loaf pan with vegetable oil or an oil spray and then sprinkle with flour to coat the dish. Pour the batter into the greased dish and bake for approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour or until a knife comes out clean from the center. Allow the bread to cool in the pan for 20 minutes at room temperature, then remove the loaf from the pan and cool completely to room temperature on a wire rack.