Here’s another awesome recipe from the brilliant mind of Jonathan Curry, our Edinburgh-based contributor!
These tasty little snacks were born when I was leafing through Niki Segnit’s flavour thesaurus when I came across the idea of combining beetroot and coconut – as chef Cyrus Todiwala does in his samosas. This recipe is my imagining of what they might be like, but made with a lighter puff pastry.
You can use pickled beetroot in this recipe, but I find that fresh is better. To prepare them is simple – wash, then rub with a little olive oil and salt and bake at 390F (200C) for around 45 minutes. Let them cool and peel and you’re ready to go!
I use prepared puff pastry as I find it’s quicker and easier than my homemade attempts, but if you fancy yourself as a budding pâtissier then go right ahead and make your own!
(How many you make depends on how big you make them!)
320g prepared puff pastry (or several rice papers-see note below!)
4 medium potatoes, cut into ½ inch cubes
2 medium beetroots – roasted, peeled and cut into ½ inch cubes*
1 red or green chilli, minced
½ cup of grated coconut – fresh or dried
1 tbspn cilantro seed
1 tbspn mustard seed
1 tbspn black mustard seed
2 tbspn cumin seed
1 tspn chilli powder
1 tbspn turmeric
3 or 4 dried curry leaves
Salt and pepper
*You can also use fresh beetroot, just grated. I did this and it was great!
Preheat the oven to 390F (200C).
Bring a pot of water to the boil, then add the turmeric, curry leaves, a few tbsn of coconut, and a few pinches of salt.
Add the potato and cook for around 10 minutes, before gently straining into a colander.
Fry the cilantro, mustard seeds, cumin, and coconut in a little oil, over a low heat for a minute or two. Be careful as the coconut will brown very quickly!
Grind the coconut and spices in a pestle and mortar, before mixing in the minced chilli and chilli powder.
Mix together the beetroot, potato and spice mix in a bowl. Season as necessary.
Roll out the puff pastry until it’s a few millimetres thick, then slice into 5-6 inch rectangles.
Add a few teaspoons of filling the middle of each one, then fold into triangles, pressing the edges down.
Bake for about 15 minutes, then leave to cool on a wire rack
These go great with nimbu (lime) or brinjal (eggplant) pickle. These make great little snacks for when you’re out and about – bring them to a picnic and your friends will probably erect a statue in your honour!
Editor’s (okay, Heather’s) note:
So in Panama it’s really difficult to get a hold of puff pastry. With that in mind, I used rice paper to wrap these bad boys; I cut my circular rice papers in half, then did the usual dip-in-water-then-wrap-your-shit thing. I folded it into a triangle, then made another layer with another half wrapper. I deep fried some of these, and I baked others. They were great; deep frying is quicker and crispier, baking is healthier. Whichever way you chose, I recommend making a basic cilantro salsa (cilantro, garlic, oil, lime juice, salt) and topping the samosas with them. Takes this dish to a whole new level – and it’s gluten free!