I used dried mango powder in the tikka masala spice mix and sumac in the dip. The mango powder provides a sour note and brightens the other flavors, similar to how lime or lemon juice is used without adding extra liquid. Sumac has a tart and nutty flavor. You can leave both out, but it’s worth the effort to visit an Indian grocery store or spice shop, or you can find it on Amazon.
You could also add dried lemon zest to the spice mix and a squeeze of lemon juice to the dip to try and mimic the effect.
For the tikka masala spice mix:
- 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
- 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
- 1 tablespoon paprika or 8-10 kashmiri lal mirch chilies
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons dry mango powder or lemon zest
- 1/2 tablespoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon dry mint leaves
For the samosas:
- 1 1/2 tablespoons cooking oil
- 1 cup chopped red onion
- 1 tablespoon minced jalapeno
- 1 pound ground chicken
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon tikka masala spice mix
- 1 cup cilantro
- 2 pounds phyllo sheets (about 2 boxes)
- 1/4 cup melted butter or oil for brushing the phyllo sheets
For the mint yogurt dip:
- 3/4 cup plain yogurt
- 1/3 cup fresh mint leaves, chopped
- 1 teaspoon ground sumac or lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon salt or to taste
1 Make the spice mix: In a small skillet set over medium high heat, add the cumin and coriander seeds. Dry toast the seeds for 5 minutes or until the spices become fragrant. Turn off the heat. Allow the seeds to cool down completely.
In a spice grinder (or mortar and pestle) add the toasted seeds, paprika, garlic powder, mango powder, ground ginger, ground cinnamon, ground cloves, and mint leaves, and grind everything together until it’s a uniform fine powder.
Transfer to an airtight container. Store in a cool dry place.
2 Make the samosa filling: In a large skillet set over medium heat, add the oil. Once the oil shimmers, add the onion and jalapeño. Sauté for 5 minutes until the onion softens.
Turn the heat to medium high and add the chicken, 1 tablespoon of the tikka masala spice, and salt. Break the ground chicken into pieces, stirring a little while you do it to combine the chicken with the onion and jalapeño. The chicken is ready when it is browned and all of the liquid has cooked off. Stir in the cilantro.
Turn off the heat. Let it cool completely.
3 Preheat the oven to 375°F.
4 Assemble the samosas: Place a stack of thawed phyllo sheets on your workstation. Work with 2 full sheets at a time, and cover the rest with damp, but not wet, cloth. Some of your phyllo might be broken or brittle. Try to use complete sheets.
Stack the two sheets on top of each other, and brush the phyllo gently with butter or oil. Fold the sheets in half lengthwise.
Place 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons of filling on one corner of the phyllo sheet. Fold the corner with filling over to make a triangle. Now lift the bottom side of the loose end, and fold it over the longer edge of the samosa to make a triangular shaped parcel. Tuck the loose ends underneath. Brush the top with butter or oil. Place the samosa on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Repeat with the rest of the filling and phyllo sheets.
4 Bake the samosas: Bake for 10-15 minutes until the edges of the samosas begin to turn golden.
5 Make the dip: While the samosas are baking, make the dip. In a medium-sized bowl, combine yogurt, mint, sumac, olive oil, pepper, and salt. Stir it together.
6 Eat samosas! Pull the samosas out of the oven, transfer to a serving platter, serve alongside the mint dip, and enjoy hot!