Imagine a pie that’s a cross between a traditional English Shepherd’s pie and and an Indian samosa … and you get this samosa pie!
A friend of mine and Mr. Scrummy’s in Australia is originally from Singapore. Everyone loves to invite her to a party or gathering because she’s a beautiful person. They also don’t mind at all that as a big bonus she tends to bring along a huge plateful of freshly made samosas.
The samosas are always such a hit that people sometimes even request them. Our friend doesn’t mind in the slightest and happily obliges, but she shared with us on our last trip Down Under that she often has a little giggle to herself that people assume that this is what she must be good at making … just because she’s from Asia!
I suppose the same sort of thing might happen to all of us if we went to live in Singapore. Might I be asked to bring along a traditional British Shepherd’s pie or fry up some fish and chips?
Speaking of Shepherd’s pie, after coming across a recipe for a ‘samosa pie’ I decided I’d give it a go. I’m not sure I could ever make any simple samosas as good as our friend’s, but the idea of this pie seemed so easy, with no pastry-wrapping to do, that I thought it must be pretty fool-proof. It’s basically a cross between a Shepherd’s pie – which is minced lamb topped with potatoes, just in case you don’t know – and samosas! I thought that just had to be good!
Thankfully, I was right! I ended up with a mildly curried pie with just a light and crispy ‘crust’ of scrunched-up filo pastry. There was also ginger, garlic, coriander and a squeeze of lemon in there which gave it a really rich and tangy flavour. To be honest, I couldn’t imagine how this would taste as I made it, but Mr. Scrummy sorted that one out for me when we sat down to eat. “This tastes just like a samosa!” he declared.
So I think that must mean that the pie was a success! It’s a pie that tastes like a samosa = samosa pie!
Now if you’re thinking “Ah-haa … but don’t try to tell me this is like a Shepherd’s pie. Where’s the potato?” … don’t worry! There is oodles of grated sweet potato in the meat mixture too to give the pie a bit of extra flavour, colour and substance.
You’ve also probably heard the ‘rule’ that a Shepherd’s pie is only a Shepherd’s pie if made with lamb (if made with beef it’s a cottage pie!) but as this is just a ‘pretend’ Shepherd’s pie then of course it’s fine to use beef instead of lamb if you so prefer.
Confession … we ate the leftovers this evening on a baked potato with salsa and Greek yoghurt … delicious!
- a bit of oil for cooking
- 1 onion chopped
- 17.6 ounces lamb mince or beef if you prefer
- 1 medium sweet potato about 300 grams/10.5 ounces, peeled & grated
- 2 garlic cloves chopped or minced
- a piece of fresh ginger the size of the width of your thumb peeled & grated or finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons curry powder I used a medium-strength powder
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon flour
- 1 1/4 cup stock I used beef
- 3.5 ounces frozen peas
- a good handful fresh coriander chopped
- 1/2 juice of a lemon
- salt & pepper
- 3 to 4 sheets filo pastry
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
Heat the oven to 180C/355F. Heat a drizzle of oil in a pan, then fry the onion for a couple of minutes. Add the lamb mince and brown for about 5 minutes, then add the sweet potato, garlic, ginger, curry powder and tomato paste. Stir well, then sprinkle over the flour and stir again.
Add the stock to the pan, then cook on a medium heat for about 10 minutes or until the potato has softened, then stir in the peas, coriander and lemon juice. Season well.
Tip the meat mixture into a medium-sized pie or baking dish, then brush your filo pastry sheets with a little oil and scrunch over the top of the meat (I only needed 3 sheets but use 4 if that’s better for the size of your dish). Finally, sprinkle over the cumin seeds and bake for about 10 to 15 minutes or until the top of the pie is browned and crispy.
Adapted from this recipe at BBC Good Food.
Feel free to use beef mince instead of lamb - although the lamb has such a wonderful flavour!
Leftover samosa pie is delicious served over a baked potato with a simple spicy salsa and Greek yoghurt.
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