I'm getting closer. Close, but no real cigar. This is the second time that I've tried samosas lately (see RFD's here). These are the "Samosas with Potatoes and Peas" from the Joy of Cooking book, latest edition (which I don't own, I got it from the library). Btw- the library is an excellent source for culling vegan recipes from non-vegan books without having to buy a book that's comprised of 3/4 meat recipes.
Anyway, these are far, far closer to the classic Indian restaurant samosas that we know and love and that I'm trying to come up with a solid go-to recipe for. Still, I'll continue the quest and probably just cave in and make my own dough, as these two tries at samosas that use recipes that circumvent dough making fell a bit short of what I'm after.
Still, these are good in their own phyllo-y way. If you've never worked with phyllo, I must warn you that you desperately need to have two things in your house; counter space and beer, wine or liquor to take the edge off. Actually, it seems like it would be fun if you just had the former. I absolutely don't have counter space and didn't realize how much room that I needed (but didn't have) until I was in the throws of the phyllo. It needs to stay moist- but can't get wet or damp or it'll stick together. So, you cover the dough with wax paper to shield it from moisture, then cover the paper with a damp towel. If you don't have enough space, inevitably your towel will touch your dough and ruin a good few sheets by wadding them together. Conversely, if the dough were to, say, hang off the edge of your teensy counter on the bottom- said dough would be dried up and useless as well.
Somehow I got enough dough to work to make them. I also got to utilize my Girl Scout skill of flag folding, as that's how the phyllo is folded after you put your filling in.
The samosas themselves were good, a bit too lemony acidic, though, I'd cut back on that if I made this filling again (which I probably would, it was really close to my idea of a perfect potato samosa).
The chutney is from a book called, "Pure and Simple: Homemade Vegetarian Indian Cuisine" that I got from the library. This chutney could make any goofy attempt at samosas taste delicious! It has cilantro, green chilis, cumin seeds, coriander, salt and lemon juice in it. It's easy peasy as it's all thrown in a blender (besides the lemon, which is added after). It was a bit too thick, so I thinned it with a teeny bit of water, though. It was spicy, but not unbearably so. I also have a slight aversion to strong cilantro taste, which remarkably this didn't have even though there was 2 cups of the leaves in there.
I also cheated and picked up a tamarind chutney from a nearby restaurant (I made 3 recipes that night and was tired). I would recommend having both the chili and the tamarind- as the sweet and spice are a great combo.