pastry for savoury pie

baked vegetable samosas with mango chutney

29th March 2015

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I woke with a feeling of peace in my heart….

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all day I breathed softly, moved slowly

afraid it might disappear….

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baked vegetable samosas

Makes 13 half-moon samosa

I made these for a special dinner to have sitting around the fire outside.  I used a good quality ready-made puff pastry for my first attempt, but the second time I made my own pastry, which was a recipe tried and tested by Noa.  Both were great – it just depends on how much time you want to spend making them.  

I keep the filling mild, as the chutney adds the spark it needs, but if you like strong flavours, increase each spice by ¼ teaspoon.

for the dough

350g flour (200g white & 150g wholewheat)

½ tsp rock salt

1 tsp sugar

200g unsalted butter

100ml very cold water

1 tsp apple cider vinegar

for the filling

1 Tbsp oil

1 large bulb fennel/2 sticks celery (160g)

1½ cup/220g sweet potato/pumpkin, finely diced 

1 cup/190g potato, finely diced 

1 cup/90g cabbage, finely chopped 

1½ cups/180g cauliflower, finely chopped 

½ tsp brown mustard seeds

1  tsp cumin seeds

1 tsp coriander seeds

1 Tbsp ginger, finely grated

½ tsp home-made garam masala powder

½ tsp turmeric powder

½ cup coconut milk/water

¾ cup/90g frozen peas

to make the dough 

1.  Place the flour, sugar and salt into a bowl and mix, then cut the butter into hazel-nut size pieces and add to flour, making sure all the pieces of butter are well coated with flour – cover and place in the freezer for a minimum of 1 hour or overnight.

2.  In a food processor with an S-blade attached, add the cold flour and butter, process for 20 seconds (the mixture should resemble fine meal), then stir the vinegar with the very cold water and pulse in short bursts. The dough will still look crumbly, but if you press it between your fingers, it should become smooth. If the dough is too dry and is not coming together, add ice water a tablespoon at a time.

3.  Turn dough out onto a clean work surface.  Gather and press the dough together to form a unified mass. Divide the dough into 12 equal balls, each one weighing roughly 50 – 55 grams each.  Press each ball into a small round disc, wrap tightly in plastic and refrigerate for at least 2 hour and up to 24 hours.

to make the filling 

4.  In a small pan dry-roast the cumin and coriander seeds, then place in a mortar and pestle and ground coarsely, then add turmeric and garam masala into the pestle.  Set aside.

5.  Remove the outer leaf of the fennel and finely chop into very small pieces, along with the remaining vegetables. Remove the thicker stems of the cauliflower and chop into thin shreds. Set aside.

6.  In a large skillet over moderate heat, add oil and mustard seeds; when the seeds start to turn grey and pop, add ginger, ground spices, garam masala and turmeric – fry for a few seconds, then add the fennel, cauliflower, potato and sweet potato, and cabbage, pour in the coconut milk/water and saute, covered for 5 -7 minutes.  

7.  Add the peas and turn off the heat, cover and allow to rest so that the vegetables continue to soften.  Set aside to cool for 30 minutes.

to assemble the samosas 

8.  Remove one of the discs of dough from the fridge.  If they are very firm, let sit for a few minutes at room temperature until the dough is pliable enough to roll.  The dough will soften and become easier as you work with it.

9.  Roll each disc between two pieces of cling film, into a circle of 5½-inches. Place two heaped tablespoons of the vegetable mixture into the middle of each circle.

10.  Brush the edges with milk/ghee, and flip the corner over the mixture to create a half-moon, then press the edges together with a fork and prick the top twice to allow the heat to escape.  Repeat with the remaining pastry. Place the pastries on a baking tray.

11.  Brush the top with melted ghee or milk and sprinkle over the sesame seeds.  Cover and place in the refrigerator for 1 hour.

when ready to bake

12.  Place the tray into a preheated 210C/420F oven and bake for 20 – 25 minutes.

If using ready-made puff pastry, they will take longer to bake – about 30  – 40 minutes or until golden brown.

spicy mango chutney (mango gojju)

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Inspired by South Indian yogic cookbook.

I make this quick and easy chutney when I see green mangoes in the stores.  Can be also made with barely ripe mangos as well.  The less ripe the fruit is, the sourer the taste will be. Balance the amount of sugar accordingly.  I use it as a replacement for pickle in dishes like this one.  It makes a great dipping sauce for these samosas and perfect as an accompaniment to any rice dish or Indian meal. 

Makes about 1½ cups

ingredients 

2 medium-large/765g green mangoes (half-ripe, green outside and light yellow inside)

½ tsp mustard seeds

2 small whole chillies

6 fresh curry leaves

¼ tsp asafoetida powder

¼ tsp turmeric powder

3 heaped tsp rasam powder (moderately spiced)

½ tsp fine rock salt

4 heaped tsp jaggery/brown sugar

preparation 

1.  Peel the mango and cut into tiny cubes, then set aside.

2.  In a heavy-based saucepan, add oil and mustard seeds; when they start to turn grey and pop, add whole chillies, curry leaves and asafoetida powder – fry for 20 seconds, then add the turmeric and mango, saute until the mango becomes soft, adding ¼ cup water when it starts to stick – cover and simmer for about 10 minutes.

3.  Turn off the heat, add salt, jaggery and rasam powder.  Taste, adding more jaggery or salt.

4.  Puree half the mixture with a hand- immersion blender.

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quick puff pastry version

I make this version on a regular basis.  I follow the recipe but instead of making my own pastry, I buy a good quality organic puff pastry.

1.  Brush the outer edge of the pastry with melted butter or milk.

2.  Take the vegetable filling and scoop inside the pastry leaving a space of 1-inch around the outer edge.  Flatten the top of the filling with a back of the spoon so that there is less of a mound.

3.  Take the other round pastry from the fridge and gently place over the filling, so that it sits evenly on top.

4.  Roll the edges over itself and press to seal with the edge of a fork.  Place in the fridge for 10 minutes to firm up, then move the pastry back to your work surface.

5.  Brush the top with melted butter or milk, slash decoratively and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Prior to baking rest in the refrigerator for 15 minutes to prevent shrinkage during baking.

6.  Place the tray into a preheated 200C/400F oven and bake for 40 – 50 minutes, until deeply golden. Eat straight away with a very green tabouli salad and spicy mango chutney.

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