Cheese Lovers Samosas (Samboosak)
A stringy, ooey, gooey mixture of mozzarella, feta and cream cheese wrapped in a crunchy samosa dough pocket. These fun-filled triangles are the perfect appetizer for cheese lovers. Could be made with phyllo. Freezes impressively well!
It’s savory recipe time y’aaaaaaall! Finally!
Which meeeeeans…cheese has got to be involved!
Ofcourse. What else?
If you’ve been following along through my baby 8 months of blogging, you’ve probably noticed a pattern here. Out of the 4 lonely savory recipes I’ve shared, 100% of them include cheese.
And now comes this…
CHEESE LOVERS SAMOSAS…because one type of cheese, just won’t do. We’re going with THREE!
Mozzarella. Cream cheese. Feta.
Cradled in the crunchiest, pastry pocket.
Can we just cut to the chase and deem this the real “Love Triangle” already?
Samosas, or as we call them in Egypt, Samboosak, are these thin pastry triangles filled with yummy stuff, then fried (or baked, if you wanna go the innocent route) until golden and crunchy. The filling is usually savory, like minced meat or vegetables, but I’ve tried sweet fillings and OMG yum! How are sweet samosas not a thing?! Let’s make it a thing!
Samosas are believed to have originated in Central Asia, but they’re also super popular in South Asia, the Arabian peninsula, the Mediterranean and some parts of Africa.
They are the nicest appetizer year round, but for some reason, they’re mostly associated with the fasting month of Ramadan. Most often than not, you’ll find a platter of some type of samosa highlighting an Iftar (meal of breaking fast) spread. At least around these parts.
My mom has made a habit of making these incredibly delicious cheese samosas, whenever we’d go over for dinner. Ramadan or not. She knows we love them so much, because they’re always the first thing to disappear. Plus…they’re always a hit with the kiddos!
Ofcourse I had to ask her for the recipe to give it to you, because we’re friends by now. Right? Bless her heart, she was more than happy to share.
The inside of the samosa will remind you of slightly saltier cheese fries. Oh yeah…we’re not kidding around here. But you know how cheese fries become so rubbery after they cool down to the extent of being inedible? Yeaaaaah…well these don’t do that! How awesome is that?! Cream cheese is the key here.
The addition of cream cheese to the mozzarella, keeps the filling nice and soft and creamy, even upon cooling. Just a tiny bit of feta adds saltiness and depth of flavor so it’s not mild and blah. You could use any salty, creamy white cheese of your choice instead or omit it all together. Alternatively, you could swap the mozzarella with any similar melty cheese combo you prefer, like Tex Mex! Feel free to spice the mixture up if you’re in the mood. Italian seasoning, mint, or some heat would be perfect here.
But for your base, here’s what you’ll need:
Samosa sheets (or phyllo. Or spring roll wrappers!), mozzarella, cream cheese, feta, and an edible glue made by combining flour with a little water.
You’ll start by combining the 3 cheeses together.
And now you’re all set to fold!
Now it might seem a little tricky at first to get that perfectly shaped triangle, but I promise you’ll get the hang of it after
ruining trying a couple. Here’s a great tutorial that really helped me out; I highly recommend you check it out.
But I’m still bombarding you with step-by-step pictures, nevertheless.
Laying the samosa sheet flat, you’ll grab the top right corner of the sheet, and fold it halfway down to the left side.
Add some of the flour paste to adhere the fold that has formed to the long sheet. Add a little more paste to the right hand side of the sheet. Why so much glue you ask? It traps your cheese filling inside so it doesn’t go anywhere as you fry.
Now bring the triangle that has formed on the left side, down to the right side, landing on the paste you just added. A cone shape should now be formed. You’ll wanna make sure that the corner of the cone is nice and tight and doesn’t have a big hole, so the filling doesn’t escape during frying.
Now cup that cone in your hand and start filling with the cheese mixture using your other hand. A tablespoon and half is a good amount. You don’t want to skimp on the filling, but you don’t want to overfill it either or it could ooze out during frying. Tip: Use a small ice cream scoop to fill; makes releasing the cheese mixture a breeze.
Now lay the filled cone/sheet back onto the working surface, and lightly flatten the filling with your hand. Dab some more of the flour paste on all the remaining sides.
Now all there’s left to do is fold down the filled cone to the left side, then fold down once again to the right side. See that little tail sticking out? Just stick it to the triangle. Perfect! No? Didn’t quite get it? Then keep scrolling for a little GIF…
Now keep them nice and cold in the freezer until you’re ready to fry, or save them in there for a rainy day! Freezing is a little extra insurance that the cheese will not seep out while frying, but you could still fry right away if you want:)
Here’s the thing; we’re not deep frying here…we’re only using juuuuust enough oil to cover less than half way up the samosas. This will prevent the cheese filling from getting all rebellious and wanting to escape. Also…makes it diet food…teeehhheeee:)))
A few minutes on each side and VOILA!
All ready to grace the iftar table. Now bring on the dates and karkadeh (a traditional Ramadani hibiscus drink).
Oh my Gosh! Yum!
Remember when I said it will remind you of the inside of cheese fries?
Which brings me…Ummm…WHERE’S THAT MARINARA DIP?!!!
- 22 samosa sheets, about half of a 500g package (could be substituted with phyllo dough or spring roll wrappers. *See note), thawed
For the filling:
- 350g/ 12.4oz (3 cups) mozzarella cheese (similar melty cheese may be substituted), shredded
- 8 squares Kiri or 113g/ 4oz cream cheese, softened
- 1 1/2 tablespoons (21g/ 3/4oz) creamy, salty white cheese, like creamy feta, barameely or istanboli
To seal the dough:
- 2 1/2 tablespoons (19g) all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons water
- Neutral tasting oil like vegetable, sunflower, corn or canola oill
- In a medium bowl, mash together with a fork the cream cheese and salty white cheese until smooth. Add the mozzarella cheese and stir together until well combined. Set aside.
- In a small bowl, stir together the flour and water until smooth and form a paste similar in consistency to white glue.
- Working with one samosa sheet at a time, keep the rest covered under a tea towel, to prevent from drying out. (*If using phyllo or spring roll wrapper, please see note below)
- To fold and fill the sheet, follow the instructions on the back of package or please refer to the pictured instructions in the post above or watch this tutorial. Start by bringing the top right corner of the sheet, halfway down to the left side. From the top, you should be able to see a triangle forming underneath. Add some of the flour paste to adhere the fold that has formed to the long sheet. Add a little more paste to the right hand side of the sheet.
- Now bring the triangle that has formed on the left side, down to the right side, landing on the paste you just added. A cone shape should now be formed. Make sure that the corner of the cone is tight and doesn't have a big hole, so the filling doesn't escape during frying.
- Lift the samosa sheet from the working surface and let it rest on the palm of your left hand. With your right hand, using a spoon (I prefer to using a small ice cream scoop for easy release), stuff the cone with about 1 1/2 tablespoons of the cheese mixture.
- Place the filled cone/sheet back onto the working surface, and lightly flatten the filling with your hand. Dab some of the flour paste on all the remaining sides.
- Fold down the filled cone to the left side, then fold down once again to the right side. You should now have a perfect triangle with a little tail sticking out. Bring the tail up and adhere it to the triangle. Now you have a perfectly shaped samosa triangle. Repeat with the remaining sheets.
- Keep the wrapped samosas cold in the freezer until you're ready to fry (at least until you heat the oil) or fully freeze and store in zipper lock bags for up to 1 month. Just let them thaw slightly, for 10 to 15 minutes before frying.
- To fry the samosas, fill a skillet with enough oil just to cover the bottom of the skillet. DO NOT deep fry the samosas in lots of oil or the cheese will ooze out. Heat over medium heat until shimmering.
- Place enough samosas to fill the skillet without overcrowding it. Fry for about 2 to 3 minutes on the first side until golden brown in color, then turn them to the other side and cook for another minute or two until nicely browned as well.
- Transfer to paper towels to drain then arrange on to a serving platter to serve. Best enjoyed while still warm, so the cheese is still ooey and gooey. When cooled, the cheese filling will remain nice and soft but not melty and oozy.
- If using phyllo dough, cut each sheet in half from the long side. Working with one half sheet at a time, cover the remaining phyllo with a damp cloth to avoid drying out. Fold each half sheet in half, so you have a double layer, thin rectangular sheet, similar in size to the samosa wrappers. Proceed with step 4. Note that the phyllo fries a lot faster than samosa wrappers.
- Similarly, if using spring roll wrappers, cut accordingly to form a long, thin triangle.
- Filled (not fried) samosas keep really well in the freezer for up to 1 month. You could double (or quadruple) the quantity and store in the freezer in zipper lock bags until needed. Just allow to thaw a little, for about 10 to 15 minutes, until you heat the oil, before frying. They fry really well from frozen.
Measurements Note: All recipes of this site have been developed using weight measurements. Although US volume measurements have been included for your convenience, it is highly encouraged that you weigh your ingredients using a kitchen scale to get the best possible results. Due to the sensitive nature of baking, kitchen scales are proven to yield more accurate and consistent results than measuring cups. Enjoy!
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