There are many ways of spelling this recipe, some call it Sambousek or Sambousak or even Sambosa. The recipe is similar to the Indian Samosa which I was surprised to find out through Wikipedia originated in the Middle East.
Sambousek is a hot Mezze dish that is made of fried stuffed dough, similar to the Indian samosa and the Spanish empanada. It is usually stuffed with either minced lamb or white cheese and the two variations are delicious. But you can try using any filling you like. Once you stuff the dough, you can freeze the Sambousek until you need to use them. This makes them perfect for entertainment.
The dough recipe is simple to make and doesn’t have any yeast, but yet needs a resting time. While forming the Sambousek I used a Chinese dumpling maker which makes the process much easier, but if you don’t have it then simply seal it with a fork.
Before I begin with the recipe, I would like to thank everyone for their comments and emails during my absence. I really appreciate your concern and am thankful for having you all as my followers.
You will need:
- 3 cups flour
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 500 grams minced lamb meat, about 1 lb *
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 tablespoon samneh or ghee or butter**
- salt and pepper, to taste
* Usually I use lamb and sometimes I use half minced lamb and half beef. If you don’t have it available you can use beef only. Don’t worry it will taste just as good.
** In the Middle East we usually use ghee or samneh. Its basically clarified butter, so it has higher burning point. In case you don’t have it available then replace it with a butter and oil mix (equal parts of both)
In a bowl, mix the flour and salt. Then add the oil to it.
Mix everything well until the mixture resembles corn meal.
Now in a stand up mixer (or just by hand if you want), add enough water to form a dough. I think around 1 cup should be enough. Just add little at a time. What you are looking for is a dough that doesn’t stick to the sides of the mixer bowl and that is easy to handle.
Shape the dough into 1.5 to 2 inch balls. Then place it on a lightly floured tray.
Let the dough rest for one hour. I know this dough doesn’t have any yeast, so don’t expect it to rise. The resting part is to make it easier to roll out later.
While waiting for the dough to rest, prepare the filling.
Start by melting the samneh or butter in a pot. Then add the chopped onion and cook until translucent.
Add the minced lamb meat and cook until nicely browned.
Once the meat is browned, add the cumin, salt and pepper.
Mix everything well then set it aside to cool down before using.
After one hour of resting, take one ball of dough and roll it out into a circle.
Here I’m using a Chinese dumpling maker. It makes life a lot easier with filling stuff.
Fill the dough with the cooked meat.
Then if using this equipment then simply press to seal. If you don’t have it, then simply seal it with a fork.
Place all the stuffed sambousek on a lightly floured tray.
At this stage you can freeze the sambousek, and once you need to use it, simply take it out of the freezer straight into the deep fryer.
In a deep fryer, fry it until golden.
Serve the Sambousek hot as a side on a Mezze Platter
Happy cooking, and as we say in Arabic “Sahha Wi Afia”