I used to make Santa’s sacks for the girls every year in the run up to Christmas. Back when they were much younger with less sophisticated taste buds I made them filled with mashed potato and sweetcorn to represent the gold coins/toys in Santa’s sack. Every year they’d eagerly await the roll out of Christmas cooking with iced gingerbread, yule log and Santa’s sacks all top of the wish list!
Whilst they still get the same excitement from the introduction of Christmas foods, this year I’ve decided to make Santa’s sacks more flavourful, and worthy of starter position in our Christmas lunch. We love homemade samosas, so I’ve filled the little parcels with a gorgeous curried pea and potato mix and I am going to serve them with a swoosh of mango chutney. If you don’t want to make sacks the filling makes a fabulous traditional samosas which can be baked and then frozen to reheat at a later date.
Another great starter for Christmas day are my cauliflower cocktails (a.k.a. veggie prawn cocktails), especially if you like a slightly retro vibe! What starters are you having on the big day?
Samosa Santa’s Sacks
(dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, vegetarian and vegan)
Makes about 15-20
2 baking potatoes
1 tbsp oil
1 onion, finely shopped
1 tsp yellow mustard seeds
3cm ginger, finely chopped or grated
1 tsp ground coriander
½ tsp ground cumin
½ tsp garam masala
¼ tsp chilli powder (optional)
½ tsp amchoor (or use 1 tsp lemon juice)
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp water
1 cup cooked peas
2 tbsp dairy-free margarine, melted
1 pack filo pastry
see the photos below for the processes…
- Preheat the oven to 170 degrees Centigrade non fan/180 degrees fan. Bake the two potatoes for an hour or so until totally cooked through.
- Meanwhile, heat the oil in a frying pan and sauté the onions and mustard seeds until starting to turn golden. Add the ginger and continue to sauté.
- Add all the spices and fry for a couple of minutes, then add the water and stir, turn off the heat.
- Scoop the potato out of the jackets and roughly mash. Stir in the onion mix and add the cooked peas. Mix well and taste, adding more salt and/or lemon juice as required
- Cut the filo into squares about 15cm squared. Place one sheet on the work surface, brush with the margarine, place another square onto at an angle so it looks vaguely star shaped. Brush with the margarine.
- Place 1 tbsp of filling in the centre of the filo star, bring up the edges and pinch together to form a parcel shape. Transfer to a baking sheet and brush with more melted margarine. Repeat until all the filling has been used up.
- Either chill at this point and cook later. Or, bake for 15 minutes until golden and crisp. Tie a chive around the neck of the sack if you wish and then serve with condiments of choice.