This post originally appeared at Food52.
In our hearts we know the truth: The dream meal is apps and zerts. Apps and zerts. Apps and zerts! Say it with me and you’ll realize it’s what you’ve needed all along. Entrées are important and occasionally necessary—like on Christmas, for example, when tradition dictates that you roast an animal—but appetizers are where the fun is (and desserts are a non-negotiable).
Apps are small, varied, portable, and often fried—an ideal list of qualities. Even when offered alongside a main course, they are easy to pile so high on your plate that you forget to eat anything else. In my post-work hangry stupor, an app-centric dinner usually takes the form of samosas from my favorite neighborhood Indian place. Pockets of dough filled with potatoes and peas, they are simple to tack on to the end of a takeout order to meet the delivery minimum, a snap to eat (hand-held food forever), and so deliciously filling that I accidentally relegate the “real” meal to the freezer for another day. And that’s when I rediscover the Ben & Jerry’s. Apps. And. Zerts.
While this homemade samosa recipe boasts a pretty serious ingredient list, do not be afraid: It’s mostly bits and pieces of flavorful things to make your filling eat-from-the-pot-with-a-spoon good. If you’re very brave and better with dough than I am, you should feel free to make and fry your own flaky casing; I love frozen puff-pastry with the heat of one thousand suns, and so does my oven.
Flaky Baked Samosas
Makes a little over 24 triangles
½ pound potatoes (I used the sack of new reds I had on hand), peeled and chopped into chunks (just halved is fine if they’re small)
2 big carrots, peeled and chopped into chunks
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 smallish yellow onion, chopped
One 1-inch piece of ginger, peeled and minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
¾ cup frozen peas, defrosted
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
¼ cup chopped fresh mint
½ teaspoon garam masala
1 serrano pepper, minced
Pinch of salt
A few sheets (I used two 10- by 15-inch sheets) frozen puff pastry, thawed but still pretty cold (move it from the freezer to the fridge for a few hours before use)
Flour for work surface
1 egg, beaten, with a tablespoon of water mixed in