Phulkopir Shingara | A Bengali Style Samosa |
It’s best to describe eating phulkopi’r shingara as a transcendental experience. When you’re done, time stands still, and everything else in life seems to lose its appeal. Seasonal cauliflower is used to make Phulkopi’r shingara, which has cauliflower incorporated into the potato mixture. Cauliflower is in season in Bengal during the winter. This variety of shingara can be found everywhere at this time of year, notably in sweet stores and chop stalls, where these spicy, peppery, mildly sweet delights fly off the shelves if you don’t get there fast enough.
For the pastry
- 240 g maida (all-purpose flour)
- 5 g salt
- 12 g sugar
- 35 g ghee
- 80 g water
- 500 g potatoes
- 125 g cauliflower
- 25 g mustard oil
- 2 pcs dried red chillies
- ¾ tsp panch phoron
- 4 g green chillies
- 18 g ginger
- 30 g peanuts
- 6 g spice mix (recipe below)
- 6 g sugar
- 6 g salt
- 4 g beetnoon (black salt)
- ½ tsp kasuri methi
Spice mix (only 6 g needed)
- 4 g cumin powder
- 5 g coriander powder
- 4 g turmeric powder
- 3 g red chilli powder
- 2 g amchur powder (dried-mango powder)
- 2 g gorom moshla
- 6 g chaat masala
Kneading the dough
- Combine maida, salt, sugar, and ghee in a mixing dish. Distribute the ghee evenly throughout the mixture until it resembles breadcrumbs.
- Take your time with this step because it’s crucial for flaky pastry. Fill the container halfway with water.
- It may appear dry at first because this is a tight dough but resist the desire to add extra water. When the dough is rested, it will hydrate even more.
- Also, don’t over-knead the dough because too much gluten development will result in a chewy crust.
- Cover the dough and set it aside for 60 minutes once all of the loose crumbs have been incorporated.
Preparing the filling
- Clean potatoes by soaking them in water and scrubbing them clean. This is because the skin will be left on in this recipe for flavor and texture.
- Cut the potatoes and cauliflower into 1-cm cubes and 1-cm florets.
- Green chilies and ginger should be coarsely chopped before being crushed to a fine paste in a mortar pestle.
- In a Kadai, heat mustard oil until it gently smokes and turns a pale yellow color. Fry the peanuts until they are golden brown. Remove from the equation. Add the cauliflower now.
- Fry until golden (around 4 minutes) on medium-high heat. The flavors of the cauliflower will be enhanced by lightly browning it. Set aside once brown.
- Temper the same oil with panch phoron and dried red chilies.
- Add the potatoes and cook them till golden brown over medium heat (4 minutes).
- Toss in the ginger-and-green-chili paste you made earlier. After 2 minutes, add 6 g of the spice mix and the Kasuri methi and fry for another 2 minutes.
- Continue to cook until the potatoes are almost done. Combine the fried cauliflower and peanuts in a mixing bowl. Add the sugar and black salt as well.
- Mix everything together and simmer until the fluids have evaporated.
- Before filling the shingaras, let the filling cool fully.
Folding the shingaras
- The dough should be divided into 60 g chunks. Two shingaras will be produced from each part.
- Each part should be rolled into an oval shape (about 28 x 16 cm) with a 2 mm thickness.
- Divide the rolled-out oval into two semi-circles by cutting along the shorter diameter. Join the straight edges to form a cone. Water is used to seal the container.
- Fill the cone with around 50 g of the potato and cauliflower mixture, with the seam resting on your thumb. Remember not to overfill (the pastry will be difficult to seal) or underfill (the shape will be ruined by empty pockets).
- Water should be applied to the open lips. To begin, bring the opposing side of the seam nearer the seam.
- Then, to seal it, bring the two conical ends together and press them together. This should give you a double-fold base, which will allow the shingaras to sit upright.
- The shingaras should be started in lukewarm oil (70°C). You should be able to dip your fingertips in the oil without flinching at this point.
- Fry on a moderate to medium-low heat setting, ensuring that the maximum temperature of the oil never exceeds 120°C.
- There should be small bubbles in the oil, not a lot of activity. The outside will brown while the middle remains doughy if you fry at a higher temperature.
- Turn the shingaras every 5 minutes until they are evenly golden.
- It should take about 30 minutes to complete each batch. Remove from the oil once golden.
- Allow for at least 15 minutes of cooling time after eating the shingaras because they are really spicy.
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