Kenyan samosas are fun to make and freeze very well. They’re so versatile, you can use whatever ground meat and vegetables you happen to have. Just make sure to make extra for snacking on later.
We have some dear friends who moved here about three years ago from Kenya. To say that their friendship has enriched our lives would be an understatement. We have learned so much from them about contentment, needs vs wants, education and a whole host of other things.
I’ve also learned how to make some pretty yummy food, like lentils and rice and rainbow salad. Last week I learned how to make Kenyan samosa. Samosa is a fried savory pie that is made in many Middle Eastern and African countries. It can be filled with just veggies or a veggie and meat combination.
Like in many cultures there isn’t an “official” recipe that everyone follows because people just use what they have. My friend had only had samosa a few times as a young child. Then another local Kenyan friend showed her how to make them, and she showed me.
One thing I love about this recipe is that samosa freezes well so I made a bunch and put them in the freezer for my kids for snacks. You can also freeze them before frying.
How to make Kenyan Samosas
You can make your own pastry but my Kenyan friend (and her friend) use these uncooked tortillas. So that’s what I used. I realize that makes them not completely authentic. But if that’s what they use now that they’re living in the States, who am I to question it?
Cut the tortillas in half and then make them into a funnel. You’ll make a paste with flour and water to seal all the edges.
Brown the meat and then add chopped onions, garlic, shredded cabbage, grated carrots and whatever other vegetables you want to the mixture.
- 1 pound ground meat (my friend used turkey, I used beef; they were both good)
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- 1 grated carrot
- 1 cup finely chopped cabbage
- 1/2 finely chopped onion
- 5 cloves garlic (we love garlic, feel free to use less)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 cup of flour and water - mixed
- Oil for frying (my friend used canola, I used coconut)
- Uncooked tortillas or (make your own pastry)
- Cut tortillas in half and set aside.
- Brown meat.
- Chop all vegetables and add to meat.
- Add salt and pepper.
- Fold tortillas into a triangle so that they make a pocket.
- Use the flour and water mixture as a paste to seal the seams.
- Put a heaping teaspoon of meat in the pocket.
- Again, use the flour and water mixture to seal the top seam and fold it over. At first I used quite a bit of the flour and water but as I got more comfortable with sealing the seams I didn't need as much.
- After you have a few made, heat the oil to fry them.
- Fry them until the pastry is brown and then flip.
- Remove from pan when both sides are brown and put them on a plate with a towel to absorb the oil or on a rack with a platter underneath.
- Makes about 20
Samosas are one of those cultural recipes where it's really more of a process than an exact recipe. For the most part, people just use what they have to fill it. So feel free to experiment.