Sunday, January 28, 2018

Mark Bittman's Beef and Potato Samosas

Whenever I feel a little restless, I head straight for the kitchen for some good ol' kitchen therapy. Sometimes this means roasting a whole chicken with all the fixings, other times it means making one of my mom's recipes, but today I wanted to make something different. Something I never made before. Something to completely get lost in. 

I grabbed Mark Bittman's How To Cook Everything and when I found Beef and Potato Samosas I knew I had found the right thing. Doesn't everyone love a little handheld pie?

I chose to make a beef and potato version because I was craving comfort food and wanted a heartier option, but you could totally make these vegetarian by making a potato samosa or even a lentil samosa. It's all good!

The dough for the samosas came together easy and I was surprised how easy the dough was to roll out and shape. I didn't have any breaking or tearing, which is what usually happens to me. One tip I will give you is to taste your mixture before filling the samosas. You'll want to make sure your mixture is perfectly seasoned because you can't really season them afterward.

You can choose to fry your samosas, which I'm sure is delicious, or you can choose to bake them. I chose to bake mine and was so glad that I did. I didn't feel like I was missing out at all and I didn't have a big oil mess to clean up. Major score!

These samosas have been on my to-do list for years and years and I'm so thankful I finally got around to making them. I can't wait to pack them for my lunch this week. Yum!

Beef and Potato Filled Samosas
Adapted from How To Cook Everything
by Mark Bittman
Makes 10-12 large 
or 20 small

About 1-1/4 pounds baking potatoes, russet
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus a little more as needed
1 teaspoon salt, plus more for seasoning mixture
8 tablespoons butter, divided
2 tablespoons plain yogurt, sour cream, or buttermilk
1 tablespoon ice water, plus more as necessary*
3/4 pound ground beef
1 cup chopped onion
1 fresh chile, minced or cayenne to taste
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 teaspoons minced ginger
1 tablespoon curry powder*
1 teaspoon coriander or fresh cilantro, to taste
salt and black pepper to taste 

Note:* Recipe calls for around 1 tablespoon of water to get the dough to form a ball. I had to use about 5 tablespoons of water. Regardless, the dough still turned out wonderfully. I finally got to use my Curry Powder from Penzey's and even though it turned a neon green kind of color when it hit the heat it was still delicious!

For The Dough: Place the flour and 1 teaspoon of salt in a medium mixing bowl, and stir to blend. Cut half the butter (4 tablespoons) into small bits, add it to the flour, and use your fingers until the flour mixture resembles small peas and the butter is mixed in. Add the 2 tablespoons of yogurt, sour cream, or buttermilk and stir to mix. Then, add 1 tablespoon ice cold water at a time until the mixture starts to form a ball. Knead the dough for 1 minute by hand, then cover with plastic wrap and rest in the fridge while you make the filling.
For The Potatoes: Peel the potato (should be about 1 large) and dice them into 1/2" cubes; set them in a pot of water to cover, turn the heat to high. Boil them until soft, 5 minutes should work fine.  Drain and set aside.

For The Beef:  Heat 2 tablespoons butter or olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion, chile, ginger, garlic, curry powder, and coriander. Allow the vegetables to cook down for a few minutes. Add in the ground beef and stir, until the meat loses its color, about 5 minutes. Stir in the potatoes and stir to combine the mixture. Remove the mixture with a slotted spoon, being careful to leave the grease behind (you do not want a wet greasy mixture). Place the meat and potato mixture into a bowl and allow it to cool before making the samosas.

To Make The Samosas: First and foremost, I found it is best to watch a Youtube video in order to learn some helpful tips about folding the samosas. In Bittman's book, he tells you to break off a piece of the dough, roll it into a circle (adding more flour if necessary), place 1 tablespoon of filling in the center, then fold over and seal with a few drops of water. He says to repeat these steps until you are done making all the samosas. I watched a video that had me roll the dough into a circle, cut the circle in half, place the dough in the middle, and roll up into a triangle shape. I made some samosas smaller like this and then I made some larger half moon shapes. The size and shape you chose to make are up to you.  

To Cook: You can fry the samosas. If you do you will need a frying pan with about 2 inches of oil at a temperature of about 375F. Fry only a few at a time, until they are golden brown.  Drain on paper towels and keep in a warm oven until you have finished frying all of them 

I chose to bake mine for a healthier option. If you chose to bake yours as well, then bake them on a buttered baking sheet for about 20-25 minutes at 350F. Do not feel as if you're compromising by baking your samosas, they are wonderful and taste just like little handheld pies! 


  1. Kitchen therapy is the best. I am glad your new recipe turned out. These sound delicious.

  2. I like how you break out of your routine and do something totally different. Wonderful approach and I may just follow your lead on this. By the way Kim, awesome samosas.

  3. Kitchen therapy is the best & these samosas look outstanding. I just don’t think there would be any left for lunch!

  4. Your samosas look fab! Glad you were able to finally make them. Sounds like it was worth the effort :)

  5. I've always put off making samosas thinking they would be a ton of work (and a pain in the neck), but you've plead their case!! They look so tasty!

  6. Those samosas looks delicious! Samosas is one of our favourite snack, we love it for breakfast, tea time, just about anytime of the day! You did a great job with the dough and the filling sounds delicious! I could gobble a few pieces with a cup of warm tea! Yums!


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