Samosa recipe from 15th c. Mughal India

Recipes for samosas from the only surviving copy of the Niʻmatnāmah-i Nāṣirshāhī (Nasir Shah’s Book of Delights) written for Sultan Ghiyas al-Din Khilji (r.1469-1500 – Mughal Sultan of Malwas) and completed by his son Nasir al-Din Shah (r.1500-1510).


– At the British Museum

A recipe for samosas

“Mix together well-cooked mince [minced meat] with the same amount of minced onion and chopped dried ginger, a quarter of those, and half a tūlcha [a measure] of ground garlic and having ground three tūlchas of saffron in rosewater, mix it with the mince [minced meat] together with aubergine pulp.

Stuff the samosas and fry [them] in ghee. Whether made from thin course flour bread or from fine flour bread or from uncooked dough, any of the three can be used for cooking samosas, they are delicious.”

(Translation by Norah Titley, dated 1983 after her retirement from the British Library)

In many ways this follows the traditional Samosa recipe with the ingredients being minced meat, onion, ginger, garlic, saffron in rosewater (turmeric could also be used) and aubergine pulp instead of potato as it is used today. Thank you!


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