Before I get into this Halloween-appropriate frankenstein creation, I’d like to formally announce the blog’s make-over! It’s nothing drastic, but I finally got around to replacing the former slap-on header image with the hand-lettering that has been sitting in my Moleskine for ages. My mother will be quite happy to know that I’ve adjusted the body copy to be more legible than 10-point Helvetica. Also, after solemnly acknowledging the inexorable reign of social media, there now exists a Facebook Page for Wandercrush, which you may follow if you fancy!
I’m unsure whether the blogosphere is prepared for the term ‘samosanada,’ so just think of these as a well-travelled and slightly hipster cousin to the microwavable hot pocket. They may seem a bit enigmatic with the empanada good looks and the spiced samosa-esque filling, but it makes sense once you take a bite—I promise.
Though samosas and empanadas come from two very different regions of the world, both are essentially stuffed pastries with many variations: sweet and savoury, baked and fried, meaty and vegetarian, but invariably delicious and portable.
The former are most often filled with spiced potatoes, deep-fried, and dipped in chutney; the empanada, which traces its origins back to Galicia and Portugal, is believed to have originated from its Indian counterpart. They were originally prepared as large pies and served in hearty slices to the working population, but have since developed into many sub-variations as the many overseas colonies have adapted it to their own tastes.
These are made with yeasted, whole wheat dough similar to that used in my spinach fatayer recipe—it doesn’t use traditional samosa maida flour or empanada lard, but becomes wonderfully fluffy while remaining sturdy enough to hold in all those fillings. I threw in butternut squash to celebrate the sudden plunge into cold weather season here in New York, but feel free to substitute with more potato or even another winter squash.
Butternut Samosa Empanadas (Samosanadas!)
- 1 cup ww flour
- ¼ cup water, warm
- 2 T yogurt
- ⅓ t yeast
- 1 T olive oil
- 1 T grapeseed oil
- 1 small onion, minced
- 2 green chiles, minced
- ½ inch ginger root, grated
- 1 t chili powder
- ¼ turmeric powder
- ½ t cumin powder
- ½ t garam masala
- ½ lb russet potato, diced
- ½ lb butternut squash, diced
- ¼ cup dried split peas
- salt, to taste
- handful cilantro/corriander, chopped
Proof yeast if necessary, adding to warm water with a pinch of sugar. Cover and set aside for 5-10 minutes.
Prepare dough by mixing oil and yogurt with flour and slowly adding in the yeast mixture. Add a pinch of salt and knead for 10-15 minutes, until dough is soft and elastic.
Divide dough into 4 individual balls and cover with a damp towel while preparing the filling.
In a saucepan, combine split peas with potato and butternut squash cubes, covering with water. Add salt and bring to a boil before lowering the heat, covering to simmer for 15-20 minutes or until tender. Drain and set aside.
Heat oil in a pan and sauté onions until softened. Add chile, ginger, turmeric, and garam masala. After a couple of minutes, add potatoes, butternut squash cubes, split peas, and mash coarsely, stirring in cilantro and seasoning to taste.
Preheat oven to 230ºC / 450ºF.
Roll out each dough ball and dollop the potato filling in the centre, sealing up edges by pinching and folding.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown. Dust with some chili powder and serve with green chutney! These also freeze well.
- ½ cup fresh mint
- 1 cup fresh coriander/cilantro
- 2-3 green chiles
- 2 t lemon juice
- 1 t honey
- salt, to taste
Process/pound mint, cilantro, and chiles into a smooth paste. Season to taste with lemon, honey, and salt.