This simple and tasty Uzbek Samsa recipe is one for the books! With a yummy yoghurt dip, Samsa is the ultimate snack or picnic treat!
What is Samsa?
These meat-filled parcels have relations all over the world. Empanadas from Chile, Sambusas from Somalia, Pasties from Britain, and Samosas from India.
Unlike Sambusas and Samosas, Samsa are baked, resulting in a warm, moist, yet flaky pastry. Traditionally, these little treats are baked in a barrel-like oven called a Tandyr. You stick the Samsa to the vertical sides of the barrel and let them cook at high temperatures.
The Dough Recipe
Although this recipe may seem technical, it’s actually very simple and doesn’t take long to make. You want to combine flour, yeast, warm milk, and salt to a bowl. Make sure to add more warm milk (or water) to the dough if it’s too dry. Gently knead the dough and then leave to rest in a warm place for around 20 minutes.
You can buy ready-made Phyllo pastry if you’re very short of time, however, nothing tastes better than a homemade dough. So, I’d highly recommend investing the therapeutic time to craft this delicious pastry.
In order to create a flaky dough, you want to roll out the dough very thin (around 1-2mm), and then brush ghee (or butter if you don’t have ghee) all over the surface of the dough. Slowly roll the dough along the longer side of the wrapper into a rope shape.
For this recipe, I’ve used a meat filling with an array of spices.
If you’re vegetarian, another common filling is pumpkin. You do this by roasting the pumpkin and mixing it with chopped up onion, cumin and ground coriander. It’s a fantastic alternative.
Once you’ve created your individual wrappers, you want to place a spoonful of the filling into the centre of the wrapper in a triangular shape. Brush the edges of the wrapper with egg and then fold the wrapper in to make a triangle.
Cooking & Serving Samsa
Unlike other Samsa variations (Samosa or Sambusa) that are deep fried, these puff pastry dumplings are baked.
Although this isn’t traditional, I thought it would be nice to have a little dip on the side.
So, to serve the dumplings, I rustled up a yoghurt and harissa sauce.
Check Out My Dumpling World Tour Series
I've set myself a challenge to go around the world in 80 dumplings. Why? Because so many countries share a love for dumplings and every country’s dumplings have their own unique twist. From Vareneki in Ukraine to Banh Bot Loc in Vietnam, dumplings are a way for us to celebrate various cultures and culinary differences from all parts of the globe.
Not all my dumpling recipes are up on my website, yet! So, if you’d like to check them out, head on over to my Instagram for the video tutorial and full recipe!
For The Dough
- 150g Plain Flour
- ½ teaspoon Dry yeast
- Pinch Salt
- 80ml Warm milk
- 30g Ghee or melted butter
For The Filling
- 200g Beef or lamb mince
- 1 Onion, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- ½ teaspoon Pepper
- 1 teaspoon Ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon Ground coriander
- 2 tablespoon Plain or Greek yoghurt
- 1 teaspoon Rose harissa paste
- 1 Egg, whisked
- Black sesame seeds
For The Dough
- In a bowl, combine the flour, yeast, salt, and warm milk. Add more milk if the mixture is too dry. Knead for 5 minutes and then set aside covered for 20 mins in a warm place.
- Roll out the dough to make a large flat wrapper. Gently brush the melted ghee or butter over the sheet. Then, roll the dough into a long shape. Cut the rope shaped dough into one inch pieces.
- Place the dough pieces with the swirl facing up, and press down with the palm of your hand. Sprinkle with flour, and then roll out the wrapper until the dough is around 4mm in thickness (or until the wrapper is around 3 inches in diameter).
For The Filling
- In a bowl, combine the filling ingredients.
- Get one of your wrappers and place a spoonful of the filling into the centre of the wrapper in a triangular shape. Brush the edges of the wrapper with egg wash and fold the sides into the centre, creating a triangle. Make sure the wrapper is well sealed. Repeat this process until the dough and filling have been used up.
- Preheat the oven to 190C or 170C fan.
- Place the Samsa on a baking tray and brush with more egg. Sprinkle over some sesame seeds and place in the oven for 15 minutes or until light and golden.
- In a little serving bowl, combine the yoghurt and harissa paste.
- Remove the Samsa from the oven and serve up with the yoghurt dip!