Origin of Samosa
It is a cozy, dark, and gloomy day outside. Showers of rain are drizzling across the window pane, and you are cuddled up in your blankets. A steaming hot cup of chai in your hands and a whiff of freshly made garama garam samosas. Heaven!
What more could you ask for…
Samosas have been a part of our life since forever. Be it as a tea time snack with friends or as a delicacy served to the guests.
However, did you know that our very own samosas never really belonged to us?
These golden beauties were actually brought to India by traders from Central Asia or the Middle East and were originally known as “Sambosa”.
This little snack made its way through the hearts of a lot of people around the globe from Egypt to Libya to Central Asia and India. The name slightly varies across the continent, and so does the stuffing. In Egypt, Samosas were named as Samsa after the triangular pyramids.
In Persia, however, Samosa is known as Sanbusaq, coming from the Persian word “Sanbosag” where they are served as square parcels made of phyllo pastry.
Across the Middle East, the Samosas are made out of thin phyllo pastry dough, or tortillas, or thicker maida roti, stuffed with either minced lamb, chicken, nuts or feta cheese, paneer and never with potatoes and guess what! They were fried in GHEE…yum.
Only when this snack found its way in the Indian hearts after receiving the blessings of the Indian royalty, did we add our personal touch to the glorified Samosas to make vegetarian triangular variants with potatoes, peas, and onion to be served with pudina Coriander chutney and imli chutney?
Abolfazl Beyhaqi (995-1077), an Iranian Historian mentioned it in his history, Tarikh-e-Beyhaghi.
It was introduced to the Indian subcontinent in the 13th or 14th Century. Amir Khusro (1235-1325), a scholar and the royal poet of the Delhi Sultanate, wrote in around 1300 that the princes and nobles enjoyed the Samosa prepared from meat, ghee, onion, and so on.
Ibn Battuta, a 14th-century traveler, and explorer describes a meal at the court of Muhammad bin Tughluq, where the Sanbusaq, a small pie stuffed with minced meat, almonds, pistachios, walnuts, spices were served before the main course.
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