Deep Fried Sri Lankan Samosas


2 tbsp coconut oil

1 tsp black mustard seeds

1½ tsp cumin seeds

6 cloves of garlic, grated

2½ cm piece of ginger, grated

3 sprigs fresh curry leaves

3 fresh green chillies, chopped

20 shallots, finely chopped 3 red onions, finely chopped

½ tsp chilli powder

1 heaped tsp curry powder

handful fresh coriander, chopped

1 tsp black pepper

1½ tsp salt

juice of a lime 

500ml vegetable oil 

1 egg


400g plain flour 

(plus extra for dusting)

1½ tsp salt 

juice of ½ a lime 

250ml warm water

50ml olive oil


Preparing the dough for the pastry is the messy bit. Take a large mixing bowl and sift in the flour then add the salt and water. Mix thoroughly by hand, squeezing the flour in your hands until it becomes crumb-like. Squeeze in the lime juice and then add the olive oil, a little at a time, mixing constantly. Your mixture should now have a dough-like consistency. Ensure that there is no flour stuck to the bottom of the bowl, then dust your work surface with flour and knead for around 10 minutes until it is smooth and elastic. Wrap in cling film and place in the fridge for 2 hours.

Place a large frying pan on a medium heat and add the coconut oil. Once sizzling, add the mustard seeds and, once they start to spit, add the cumin, garlic, ginger and curry leaves. Fry for 1 minute and then add the green chillies, shallots, onions, chilli powder, curry powder and coriander. Stir thoroughly to mix, and continue to fry until the onions soften and turn golden brown. Take off the heat, allow to cool and then add coriander. Mix thoroughly and set aside.

Take a chopping board – or use your kitchen surface – and dust generously with flour. Remove the dough from the fridge and divide into five equal portions. Using a rolling pin, roll each out until around ¼cm thick. Cut into long strips (around 10cmx15cm) and once each one is rolled, layer on top of each other and cover with a damp cloth to stop it drying out. cut as many as you can from the dough. Take any excess pastry, re-roll and repeat until you have used it all up. 

Take a strip of dough and starting from the bottom right hand corner fold over to make a triangular shape leaving it to hang over the edge by 1cm. Then fold it onto itself maintaining a triangular shape and you will now have a nice little cone. Add 1½ tablespoons of the mixture to the cone and fold the remaining pastry. Once you get to the end, brush the edges with whisked egg and seal. Repeat this process until you have used up all the pastry.

Place a wok on a low to medium heat, add the vegetable oil and, once hot, add the samosas, a few at a time. It is important not to let the oil get too hot otherwise the outside of the samosa will cook too quickly. Fry until they are golden brown. Remove using a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen towel. These are best enjoyed fresh and warm.