The Indian Samosas meal was originally invented in Egypt, but the word Samosa or ‘sambusak’ is Arabian in origin, derived from the Persian word ‘sambusaj’ meaning the triangle.
Samosas is a layered pastry dessert made of filo pastry, filled with chopped nuts, and well known as a fried pastry with a savory filling, such as spiced potatoes, onions, peas, beef, and other meats, or lentils.
In addition to this, the semicircular ‘sambusak’ is stuffed with feta cheese, onions, minced chicken and meat, and spinach.
Furthermore, Samosas are a popular entrée, appetizer, or snack in the local cuisines of Egypt, Lebanon, and Syria.
Indeed, Samosas are not Indian-originated snacks. Samosas are possibly from Egypt before the 10th century.
Due to emigration and cultural diffusion from these areas, the so-called king of snacks “Samosa” today are often prepared in India.
In this regard, World Food historians have mentioned that the snack travelled from Egypt to Libya to Central Asia before arriving in India via the Middle East.
According to historians, Indian samosa has Egyptian origin. the samosa appeared in the Indian subcontinent, following the invasion of the Arab and of the Central Asian Turkic dynasties in the region.
Nowadays, the Indian samosa is merely the well-known known of an entire family of stuffed pastries or dumplings popular from Egypt and Zanzibar to Central Asia and West China.
Notably, the first mention of samosas was found in Abolfazl Beyhaqi’s work Tarikh-e Beyhaghi in the 10th century, where it is referred to as samosa.
The old book refers to the pastries as sanbusak (the pronunciation still current in Egypt, Syria, and Lebanon), sanbusaq or sanbusaj, all theses synonyms are reflecting the early medieval form of the Persian word sanbosag, Although originally it was named Samsa, after the triangular pyramids of Central Asia.
On the other hand, Ibn Battuta, the Arabian renowned traveler describes on his Rihla book a meal at the court of Muhammad/Bin-Tughluq, where the samushak or sambuca, a small pie stuffed with minced meat, almonds, pistachios, walnuts, and spices, was served before the third course, of pulao.
Later on, these mince-stuffed triangles were used as a snack by travelers embarking on long journeys, as these made for an easy-to-consume yet filling food choice that could be packed in saddlebags and eaten on the go.
Meanwhile, roadside stands selling the fried snack are ubiquitous across India.
On this basis, fans of the samosa in India call the triangular-filled pastry the “king of snacks”, and Samosa Day is celebrated with much fervour across the South Asian country each year on September 5.
In India, samosa is fried until golden, drained, and placed on a newspaper sheet to absorb the excess oil, then served with mint sauce or tamarind chutney.
It’s worth mentioning that the delicious Oriental pastry is prepared with wheat flour, stuffed with spicy mashed potatoes, onions, green peas, a pinch of asafoetida, and other spices and its edges sealed.