Dan Toombs’ Keema Pau Samosa

Serves: 4 as part of a meal

Dan Toombs doesn’t specifically make a Keema Pau Samosa.

Though he does make samosas. And he does make the Keema Pau.

And so I chose to bring them together and I am giving him pretty much all of the credit.

I made these as part of a bigger lunch and the boys – 13 and 10 – literally wolfed them down and asked for more to be made.

They’re not revolutionary. Keema never is.

Though they are as good as I have had.

Note, I skipped making the samosa pastry and went for store-bought shortcrust.

I also baked these samosas rather than (shallow) frying them. Hundreds of videos on how to fold samosas and so I’ll leave that for you.

Ingredients

500gm minced lamb
5 tbsp canola oil
2.5cm cinnamon stick
3 cardamom pods, bruised
500gm onion, finely chopped
2 tbsp garlic and ginger paste*
1/2 tsp ground tumeric
1 very generous tbsp garam masala**
Generous handful of coriander
4 birds eye chillies
1/4 c frozen baby peas
1 tbsp dried fenugreek leaves***
Salt, to taste
Shortcrust pastry
1 egg
Mint yoghurt to serve

Method

  1. Mix the minced lamb with 2 cups of water and break it up with your hands until the mixture is about the same consistency as porridge. (This will help achieve a smooth keema without any lumps.) Set aside.
  2. In a large pan or wok, heat the oil over a medium-high heat and when visibly hot, stir in the cinnamon and cardamom pods and let the flavours of the spices infuse in the oil for 30 seconds. Add the onion and fry for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onion turns light brown. Stir in the garlic and ginger paste and fry for an additional 30 seconds and then tip in the meat/water mixture. Cook until the water is evaporated.
  3. Add the turmeric and garam masala and stir well to combine and simmer.
  4. In the meantime, blend the coriander and chillies with 1/4 cup of water until smooth and add to the pan; continue to cook, remembering that this needs to be a dry mixture. Add the peas and cook for a few minutes more.
  5. Finally, add the dried fenugreek leaves, breaking them up as you go. Continue to cook until the oil separates from the meat. Season with salt.
  6. Make an egg wash, heap a tablespoon of the mixture into the pastry and fold the samosas one by one, using the egg wash to seal. (I didn’t egg wash all over though will next time.)
  7. Bake until golden brown.

* Mince equal parts garlic and ginger with a small amount of water.

** I ended up adding at least two tbsp. Taste and go from there.

*** Order from Herbies.

Nat’s Keema (Lamb (or beef) mince with peas)

Serves: 4

So we have a new rule in the house.

If we find a recipe though it needs a solid change in method or ingredients, we are calling it our own. So introducing Nat’s Keema: a beef (or lamb) mince masala with peas.

We originally had this dish at a fabulous local Indian restaurant a fortnight ago and promised to reproduce it if only because it was a mince recipe; mince falling only slightly behind brisket and pork shoulder/belly in the genius stakes in our opinion.

Though there is a surprising lack of such recipes online for Keema, including on P-interest (Pinterest) which has become a bit of a destination where we swap recipes whilst at work.

The ingredients in the original recipe we finally sourced were fairly right though the method was shot.

We regrouped, changed tact, quadrupled the peas (because they are amazing) and here you have it.

It won’t change the world though it is a damn comfortable mince, low calorie and pretty special for a Monday dinner and lunch the next day. And the mushrooms are a hit.

Enjoy! (And thank Nat later…)

Ingredients

1kg extra lean beef mince (or lamb mince as per the original)
4 green chilies, diced
2 handfuls of fresh coriander
6 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp freshly grated ginger
20 small mushrooms, diced
2 onions, sliced
500gm frozen peas
400gm fresh tomatoes, diced (a few tomatoes)
4 tsp garam masala
2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp turmeric
2 tsp cumin seeds
2 tbsp vegetable oil

Method

  1. Heat the oil in the pan and add the onion and the garlic; cook until the onions are soft and starting to become golden.
  2. Add the mince and cook down until the liquid has evaporated and the meat can start to brown.
  3. Add the tomatoes, ginger, salt, turmeric and chilli. Mash the tomatoes and other ingredients to add a shine to the meat.
  4. Add the mushrooms, lower the heat, add a cup of water and cook down for 45 minutes until the mushrooms are soft and cooked through. Add more water if necessary and stir regularly until the liquid evaporates.
  5. Add the garam masala, coriander and peas. Cook for a few minutes more, stirring until the peas are cooked through.
  6. Season, spice it up if you want and serve.