October 11, 2010

Little Mung Daal and Paneer Samosas

Isn’t miniature food always better than supersized food? Take cupcakes for instance; tiny morsels of individually iced, fluffy cake is so much more alluring than a massive, calorie-laden, brick-ish cake.

Well, for me anyway.

In the same way, I would always pick a box of tiny chocolate truffles over a chunky chocolate bar. If you had given me the choice when I was a child I would have definitely supersized every time. Hence the regrettable existence of the unsightly pot-belly that tormented me in my early years.


I consume far too much salt, sugar and fat, which I am told will affect my twentysomething body in a number of gruesome ways before I hit my thirties and forties. This is one of those recipes which will carry most of the blame.

Luckily for you, I miniaturised these delicious mung daal and paneer samosas so that you can enjoy them without all of the guilt and fear of heart disease, diabetes and high blood pressure. Just don’t eat all of them at once. Having said this, I’m not a doctor and cannot advise against and diagnose illnesses using a computer. That’s how they all do it these days, right? I’m kidding with ya. Lots of prem to all of my doctor readers out there…

Whipping up samosas from scratch will play havoc with your new manicure, but it’s a labour of love and well worth the effort when you finally take a spicy bite. Lazy girls and boys may want to think twice about embarking upon this wonderful, time-consuming task.

These little pastries are perfect for parties and make excellent appetisers and hors d’œuvre’s. Your guests will also worship you for your delicious efforts.

They would partner well with a drizzle of tangy tamarind chutney (recipe coming soon due to a reader request) and served alongside a cooling raita (would you like me to post a recipe for this?)

Little Mung Daal and Paneer Samosas
(makes 25-35 little samosas- this may vary according to the size of your samosas)

Ingredients for the filling
1 cup mung daal, washed, soaked overnight and boiled until tender
2 cups crumbled paneer (recipe coming soon due to a request via Facebook for KO Rasoi)
¾ cup onions, finely chopped
1 tbsp oil
2 tsp cumin seeds
½ tsp turmeric
1 tsp white or red chilli powder (I used extra hot white chilli powder)
3 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp sugar
½ tsp garam masala powder
¾ cup fresh coriander, chopped
Salt to taste

Ingredients for the pastry
(To form a firm, smooth dough. The basic rule of thumb is that if your dough becomes sticky, add a tsp of oil and knead, if it becomes too soft, work in a little more flour, and if it becomes way too firm add a little more water and combine)

1 ½ cups plain flour
4 tbsp oil
2 tbsp lemon juice (makes the pastry light and crisp)
½ tsp salt
½ cup cold water
½ tsp garlic, crushed (optional)

Other ingredients
Enough oil to deep fry the samosas
An extra bowl of flour
Cold water

1. Heat the oil in a large non-stick pan and add the cumin seeds and onions. Sauté until translucent. Add the rest of the ingredients except the coriander and garam masala and cook the mixture until it’s dry and comes away from the sides of the pan. Add the coriander and garam masala. Set aside.

2. In a large bowl, mix together the ingredients for the dough. Knead until firm and non-sticky.

3. Get to work rolling out and lightly cooking your fresh pastry sheets (I rolled mine to around 4 inches- step 2). Use my step by step below as a guide. I cook my pastry sheets on a dry skillet (step 7) making sure they do not brown. You just want them sealed enough so that you can work with them. Sandwiching two circles of dough together with oil and flour and lightly rolling over the top of them (steps 3, 4, 5 and 6) makes the pastry thinner and the whole process a little quicker. When they are cooked, carefully peel them away from each other (step 8), then half the circles into semi-circles (step 9). Wrap these in a tea towel until you need to use them.

How to make samosa pastry at home

4. In a small bowl, make a sticky paste from flour and cold water. You will need this to seal the edges of the samosas when you fold them.

5. Use my next step by step below to fold and fill all of your samosas with the cooled mung daal and paneer mixture.

How to fold homemade samosas

6. Heat enough oil in a deep pan to deep fry the samosas until they are golden brown. Place on kitchen paper to drain away any excess oil. That’s my contribution to promoting good health right there.

Did you make this?

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24 responses to “Little Mung Daal and Paneer Samosas”

  1. the wicked noodle says:

    Looks fabulous as always!

  2. Sarah Naveen says:

    Beautiful clicks…Those samosas looks perfect and yummy!!…drool..drool…

  3. Happy Cook says:

    When ever i make samosa my pastry is too thick so i have given up making them to my daughters disapointment. Iam sure gonna try your way.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Wonderful clicks, as always I am sure they taste just as nice. Must try. Thanks Sanjana.

  5. Anncoo says:

    Looks too pretty to eat ;D

  6. Gayathri's Cook Spot says:

    I didn't know that samosa pastry should be layered while rolling to get thin pastry sheets. wonderful idea. Thanks Sanjana. Visit me when time permits.

  7. Toby says:

    My samosas always end up overly greasy… I/m going to give this a try.. it looks better than the one I'm using… Thanks for sharing

  8. sangeeta says:

    Wow …lovely samosas. Loved the mung paneer combination and garlic in the pastry. Just a bit of green chutney is all i need.

  9. Nithya says:

    Oh they look so cute and yummy as well 🙂

  10. Jhonny walker says:


    I have to number my kudos here

    1. I totally agree that as a kid super size ones would rule the roost. And hence a 80 Kg me in my teen days. Now miniature ones and I am a 48 Kg. So can't agree more there
    2. whatever salt I intake …samosas are to blame. I ateer away from them 🙂
    3. Your recipe is wonderful..and the way you have posted is just too fantastic for words. Someday I am gonna try it. But now I am feeling just happy looking at it

    and finally..the post is extremely well written. You and me should write a book!


  11. Priya says:

    Pretty and damn cute looking samosas..

  12. Mr. P says:

    I have been waiting for samosa instructions from you, because the idea of that pastry scares me. I am going to make these at the weekend for sure. I have a question though, in fact I have two.

    Did you just roll those perfect rounds, or cut them? Mine would not be perfect like those.

    How long can you keep them before frying? I presume they can be frozen and done from the freezer, but can you just keep them covered in the fridge for a while, too?

    A new way to enjoy paneer. This is just too fantastic!

  13. Xiaolu @ 6 Bittersweets says:

    I love samosas but have never really thought to make them myself. This filling sounds delicious!

  14. Sanjana says:

    Awesome feedback, guys!

    J.W- You are so sweet!

    P- I rolled them… A result of years of chapatti making. You can use a cutter too if you want. I doubt it would make much difference. Although, when making chapattis I wouldn't advise using a cutter because you want it to puff up and rise. With this pastry it doesn't matter so much because we don't really want it to rise.

    After folding up all of your samosas you can put them in the freezer, ja. You can also keep them in a tray, covered with cling film for up to two days in the fridge. I wouldn't advise keeping them in the fridge for much longer than that to be honest because you may aswell freeze them.

    You can also make the pastry ahead of time and freeze it with sheets of greaseproof paper in between. Wrap it up well though and defrost it at room temp- I wouldn't really use the 'defrost' on a microwave for this.

    Hope that helps!

  15. Ambika says:

    Awesome Sanjana, I love your pastry recipe…it looks perfectly crispy and flawless! I'm gonna try this for sure!!!!

  16. aipi says:

    They look so darn cute!!..love your filling recipe!
    First time here..I like your space 🙂

    US Masala

  17. Satya says:

    hi Sanjana
    Today i tried ur spinach n green chill puri ,they came out very well …now i posted it in my blog too …those samosas looks awesome dear …love the way u made pastry dough for it ..one more dish is bookmarked…btw i am ur happy follower..Thanks for sharing such wonderful recipes..
    if u get time do visit my blog


  18. Chow and Chatter says:

    wow awesome samosas

  19. meeso says:

    I've only had frozen samosa's filled with dal but always wanted to make them, thanks for sharing this… Looks good!

  20. Sweet Artichoke says:

    These samosas look sooo good! I like the idea of a mung dal filling and as I have never tried it, I bet it will be one of my next experimentations 🙂

  21. Except for the deep frying,I don’t think that this recipe is unhealthy at all!I will bake the samosas rather than deep frying them;The filling with mung dal and paneer is not just healthy(So much better than starchy potatoes,hehe..),but also sounds delicious!
    Thank you for sharing!:-)

  22. telugu bidda says:

    wow super, very different look , tempting by seeing images

  23. av says:

    Is the dahl measurement 1 cup of dried dahl, then soaked, or is it 1 cup of cooked dahl? Thanks. Looks great!

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