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Samosa Dough

5 1/2 oz. (1 1/2 cups) unbleached white flour: more for dusting
1/8 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. coarse salt
1/4 cup vegetable shortening
2 Tbs. plain yogurt, mixed with 1/4 cup water (more as needed)

Mix the flour with the baking soda and salt; make a well in the
center and put the shortening in the well. Pick up some flour and
fat in one hand. Slide the other hand lightly over this mixture,
moving from heel to fingertips, letting the fat-coated flour fall
back into the bowl. Pick up more fat and flour and continue this
sliding action until the flour is evenly coated; it should have a
fine texture with no lumps. Add the yogurt-water mixture a little
at a time. Add just enough liquid until the dough come together in
a mass. Depending on the flour and the humidity, you may need more
or less liquid. Knead the dough until it's smooth and elastic. The
dough is ready when it's no longer sticky and feels as soft as an
earlobe, after about 5 minutes of kneading.

Roll the dough into an 8-inch log, wrap in plastic, and let rest
for about 15 minutes. (It can also be wrapped tightly and chilled
for a day or frozen for longer--about 5 days. Bring it to room
temperature before continuing. If frozen, thaw in the refrigerator
before bringing it to room temperature.) Cut the dough into eight
even pieces. Roll each piece into a ball and flatten slightly. Keep
the pieces you're not working with covered with plastic wrap. On
a floured surface, roll a flattened piece of dough into a thin
6-inch round. To get even results, roll from the center of the
dough to the edge and turn the dough frequently. Rolling back and
forth will toughen the dough. Cut the circle in half--one half
makes a samosa. Moisten half of the straight edge with a little
flour-water mixture. Create a cone by bringing the dry half of the
edge over the moistened half. Overlap them by 1/4 inch. Press the
seam together to close. Be sure to pinch closed the point of the
cone as well. Fill the cone with two heaping tablespoons of the
potato mixture and seal the open side by continuing to pinch the
straight edge to slightly thin and extend it.



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