When I was young I was silly enough to dislike Indian food. There was something about it that I couldn’t quite get a handle on. The flavour seemed foreign and chaotic, I suppose. I disliked it so much that my poor parents were forced to save Indian food for meals that didn’t include me – wedding anniversaries for instance – and frankly, I still feel terrible about it.
If you’re shaking your head wondering what in the living hell was wrong with me, you’re not alone. I cannot believe that I was blind to the charms of Indian cuisine for so much of my young life. Today, I like to think I’m making up for lost time and I submit this Samosa Pie with Riata as evidence of that fact.
As I mentioned, my current relationship with Indian food is the exact opposite of what it once was and, surprisingly, the change of heart came quite suddenly. On one otherwise unremarkable day in the tenth grade, I mustered enough courage to bite into my first samosa. In that moment I finally got it, I understood the primary appeal of Indian food: that expert balance of flavours that creates something completely unique. No competition between flavours; no ingredient over playing their part, just harmony. Yes, I got all that from a samosa, and I don’t think it was a particularly great samosa either, but today’s Samosa Pie pays homage to that palette altering samosa.
Now, you may be wondering why I didn’t make straight-up samosas to pay homage to the samosa that changed my life. Well, three reasons: I can make pie pastry in my sleep, I try to deep fry sparingly because it scares me, and I failed (hard) at making ghee in the process of testing this recipe. Have you ever failed at making ghee? It doesn’t feel good. Anyway, when I realized my butter clarifying skills were severely limited (I need more patience), I decided to add the typical spices found in traditional samosa pastry to my beloved all-butter pastry recipe. The result was absolutely delicious and different enough from a real deal samosa that I didn’t feel the need to draw a direct comparison and disappoint myself. Yes, I will tell you now, this Samosa Pie will not taste exactly like the pastries you covet at your favourite Indian restaurant – it will taste awesome but not the same.
You typically see samosas served with mint or tamarind chutney and while both are delicious, I’ve always been a huge fan of Riata, so that’s what I made as an accompanying dip for the Samosa Pie. The cool yogurt is the perfect foil to a warm slice of spicy pie. The Samosa Pie and Riata partnership is kind of like the savoury version of apple pie a la mode: the contrast of temperatures, the creamy texture of the yogurt, the crispness of the pastry – Samosa Pie and Riata go together like, well, apple pie and vanilla ice cream.
The perfect antidote to a cool, rainy fall day, this Samosa Pie with Riata will give you the coziness you crave with the lingering heat to get you through the day.
- 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon ajwain seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon graham marsala
- 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch chunks
- 1/2 cup cold water
- 4-5 Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and quartered
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 Vidalia onion, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 (2-inch) knob fresh ginger, minced
- 3 teaspoons graham marsala
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/4 cup frozen peas
- 3 green chilis, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup golden raisins
- 1/4 cup unsalted cashews, roughly chopped
- Salt to taste
- 1 cup plain full-fat yogurt
- 1/3 whole cucumber, peeled, deseeded and diced
- 1/4 whole red onion, finely diced
- 1 green chili, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup fresh mint, chiffonade
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
- Place flour, salt, ajwain seeds, graham marsala and turmeric in a large food processor. Pulse to combine.
- Set the food processor on a low speed and add butter to flour mixture piece by piece until the it forms a coarse meal.
- With the food processor still running, pour in the water in a continuous stream. Continue to blend until the dough comes together.
- Place the dough on a floured surface and shape it into a ball. Cut the ball in half and flatten each half into a disc. Wrap each disc loosely in parchment paper and refrigerate for at least half an hour or for up to 24 hours before using.
- Place potatoes in a large heavy-bottom pot. Fill the pot with water until the potatoes are just immersed. Place pot over high heat and bring to a boil.
- Once boiling, salt the water and allow to cook for 10 minutes or until the potatoes are tender. Drain the potatoes and set aside until cool enough to handle.
- When the potatoes have cooled, cut them into 1-inch cubes and set side.
- In a heavy bottom skillet heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and saute until just translucent - about 3 minutes.
- Add the garlic and ginger to the onions and continue to cook until fragrant.
- Add the spices, potatoes, peas, raisins and green chilis to the pan and continue to cook until the potatoes and peas are heated through, and the raisins are plump.
- Stir in the cashews and remove the pan from the heat.
- Allow the filling to cool to room temperature.
- Place all of the Riata ingredients in a small mixing bowl and stir to combine.
- Refrigerate until ready to use.
- Preheat the oven to 400?F.
- Roll out both halves of the Spiced All-Butter Pastry dough and use one to line a 9-inch pie plate.
- Spoon Samosa Filling into the pastry shell and cover with the remaining half of the pastry. Trim and crimp the edges.
- Brush the pastry with an egg wash (whisk together 1 egg and 1 teaspoon of water) and top with additional ajwain seeds if desired.
- Refrigerate pie for 20-30 minutes before placing it in the oven.
- Cook the pie for 35-45 minutes or until the crust is golden brown and the filling is heated through.
- Serve warm with a side of Riata.