Cauliflower Samosas with Quick Mango Pickle
Samosas are always seen as a snack and are often deep-fried and full of what I call school dinners veg: carrots, peas, potatoes. Good as they are that way, these are a little different – fresher, cleaner and oven-baked. I make them into the main event of my dinner and pair them with a quick home-made mango pickle and a speedy grated carrot salad with some chopped coriander and toasted cumin thrown in. The folding can take a bit of practice. If you get stuck, there are some brilliant videos online that might help you out.
SERVES 6 (MAKES 24 SAMOSAS)
4 spring onions
4 tablespoons coconut oil or ghee
1 green chilli
2 cloves of garlic
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 teaspoon garam masala
a small handful of curry leaves
2 big handfuls of spinach
a bunch of fresh coriander
1 × 250–300g filo pastry (12 sheets)
FOR THE MANGO PICKLE
2 ripe mangoes
1 teaspoon nigella seeds
a pinch of fennel seeds
a pinch of mustard seeds
1 clove of garlic
the zest and juice of 1 unwaxed lime
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
Preheat the oven to 220°C/200°C fan/gas 7 and get all your ingredients together.
Blitz the cauliflower in a food processor until you have rice-like shards.
Finely chop the spring onions and put them into a pan with a little coconut oil or ghee. Fry for a couple of minutes, until beginning to brown. Add the chopped chilli and garlic, then the spices and curry leaves and cook for another 2 minutes. Add the cauliflower, spinach, coriander, a squeeze of lemon and a good pinch of salt and cook for 5 minutes, then lay the mixture on a tray to cool down quickly.
Melt the 4 tablespoons of coconut oil or ghee and have this ready along with a pastry brush. Remove your filo pastry from the packet and keep under damp cloth or tea towel to stop it from drying out.
Lay one sheet of the pastry on a clean, dry work surface and cut it lengthways into three long equal pieces. Put a heaped teaspoon of the cauliflower mixture on the bottom left of the pastry then fold the right hand corner over the mixture, this will create a triangle shape. Continue the folding, keeping the triangle shape, brushing a little oil in between each fold. You should then have a nicely triangular-shaped samosa. Give it a final brush with oil and sprinkle with the nigella seeds. Repeat with the rest of the pastry and the mixture. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, make a quick mango chutney. With the skin still on, cut off the cheeks of each mango, leaving the stone behind. Carefully slice into the cheek, almost all the way into the skin, in 1cm strips, and then across to make 1cm squares. Push from the skin side to flip the mango into a hedgehog, and use a spoon to scrape off the roughly 1cm pieces of flesh. In a small saucepan, toast the spices then add the mango and lime juice and vinegar. Cook for 5 minutes until the mango has started to break down, then take off the heat. Serve the samosas with the pickle and a quick salad of grated carrot and coriander.