Somsa (Samosa, Sambusa)

Somsa, Samosa, Sambusa

This recipe is for preparing “Somsa“, which is also known as “Samosa” or “Sambusa” in some parts of the world.

Like any other Uzbek family we like Somsa a lot. While there is a way of making special flaky dough for Somsa at home, lately I started using ready puff pastry. For someone with 2 kids, I do not have a luxury of time to take it the long way, which is to make layered dough myself. So from time to time, I do opt for easier solutions. By the way, some people might think that it is cheating to buy ready dough than to make it yourself. I personally think that if you can get your hands on quality pastry dough, there is nothing wrong with using it, especially if it saves you a lot of time. Sometime this week I will post a recipe of home made puff pastry dough, which is very easy to make.

Somsa Samosa Sambusa

Yield: 30 Somsa
Prep. and cooking time: approx. 2 hours


  • 1 pack puff pastry dough
  • 1,5 lb fresh lamb meat
  • 2 large onions
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1.5 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 egg mixed+2 Tbsp water
  • black and white sesame seeds (optional)
  • little oil to grease the pans (optional)


First fix the filling. Using a nicely sharpened knife to cut the lamb into very small cubes.

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You can hand cut onions if you wish but I opt for an easier and faster way of doing so with my little vegetable chopper. Cut onions into smaller chunks to fit the chopper. Chop the onions and add them to the meat.

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Add salt, black pepper and cumin to the meat mixture and mix well by hand.

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Put the filling to the refrigerator and start working with the dough.

Puff pastry pack usually comes in 10 square doughs. Due to nature of the puff pastry it puffs and flakes very well when you bake it. For the right size Somsa you should always divide the squares into fragments. Otherwise, you are going to end up with croissant rather than Somsas. For that I roll each square and cut it into 3 small identical rolls. I press the rolls evenly to create a circle. This will make it easier to roll the dough. If you are using conventional method of making the dough, you will need to put the dough into the refrigerator for at least a half hour. With the pastry dough, you just go ahead and circles. The size of the circles, should not exceed 4 inches in diameter. Some people choose not sprinkle flour on the working surface. But I like my dough not to stick. So, whenever I need, I do spread some flour.

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Once you are done with rolling the dough, lay them out and put some filling in the middle of each one of them. Here you need to preheat the oven to 420F.


A lot people prefer different shapes of Somsa. My family members like the regular triangular style. So, make out the triangle buy bringing three sides together and pinch the borders with your hand.

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Oil the pans you are going to be using. Put the Somsas smooth side up. Mix the egg well with 2 Tbsp of water and brush it over the Somsas to create nice golden cover. Sprinkle the sesame seeds and put the tray into the oven.

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Bake them on 420F for 20 minutes and turn the heat down to 350F and bake for another 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Usually, I use two baking pans for thirty Somsas. This way one of the pans go higher than the other. You still want them to get equal amount of heat and you do want them to bake in equal amount of time. So, do not forget to alternative the pans once or twice.

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P.S. If you happen to make any of my recipes. I would really love to hear your feedback.


  1. Smilik says

    WebMonster, thank you, I will try :)

    Dilnozik, thank you darling. Come here more often. I will try to cut your time in kitchen by half with easier recipes 😀

  2. Sorian says

    Thank you sooooo much for this! I really appreciate the tastes and the flavors of everything. I have been very fond of puff pastry dough and incorporating them into my daily life. This was so tasty and it came out perfectly…. they remind me of a chinese curry like pastry and they look very similar. I ended up making several shapes too to see which ones would cook up better.

    • Lola Mansurov says

      Sorian, I am absolutely trilled that you made it!!!!!! YAAAAYYY! I am more than glad that you actually liked it 😀 You rock!

      • Sorian says

        Hahahaha I’m only art student who loves cooking (i guess they go hand in hand in many aspects) do you have any more recipes like this and do you mind if i was to link you on my blog? They we’re sooooo good (I made them and I ate 4 and completely stuffed myself full! And my fiance enjoyed them a lot as well)

        Do you have any more puff pastry recipes? I would looove to trade recipes with you if you were interested (they dont have to be be puff pastry recipes)


        • Lola Mansurov says

          Let’s do the swapping thing! I would love to try some of your favorite recipes 😀 As the matter of the fact I do have bunch of puff pastry recipes 😀 I will drop you a line when I make them!!

          All of us are students in this life 😉 But also a great cooks 😛

          Kisses and hugs!

  3. Uzbek says

    Thank you very much for the detailed explanation! I think this page is very good source to send the link when people ask “can you give the recipe” and yes a lot of people asked me personally and I bet other people also get this kind of requests anyway thank you again!

    • Lola Mansurov says

      Thank you for visiting my blog, Uzbek :) and thank you for forwarding the recipe to your friends. It means worlds to me.

  4. рена says

    мои любимые самсушки
    огромное вам спасибо за подробные, аппетитные фотографии )

    • Lola Mansurov says

      Renochka, spasibo vam za stol’ priyatnie slova :) Zahodite k nam pochashe! Dayte znat’ esli hotite uznat’ po bol’she o kakom libo blyude. S uvazheniem, Lola

  5. Anvar Khodzhaev says

    Супер класс!
    Обязательно попробуем рецепт.
    По-моему, ваши рецепты, Лола, – лучшее
    применительно к нашему американскому набору

    • Lola Mansurov says

      Spasibo bol’she za komplimenti. Po nachalu nemnogo tyazhelo podobrat’ nuzhnie komponenti. So vremenem mozhno vse sdelat! Budu rada pomoch’ pri podborke ingredientov! 😀

  6. Rebecca says

    I love somsa! I have a friend who has made it for me a few times and it is always delicious. Now with this recipe, maybe I can surprise her next time she visits. I was wondering if you know of a dessert pocket made with apricots and dusted with powdered sugar… I don’t even know the name, but it was made for me by the same friend who introduced me to the somsa. If you know what it might be, and/or if you have a recipe, I would be most grateful. Thank You!

  7. says

    I try so many samosa, sambosa, samboka, all of them ok, but after I try Ethiopian sambusa at wow! amazing it is so good I went back and add more. the ingredient and the out side crust, It is so good I’m honestly telling you this is by far the best triangle shaped pasrty.

  8. Sabina says

    My goodness! Looks delicious! We lived in Uzbekistan for 4 years and I always wanted to learn how to make Somsa! Thank you! Definitely going to try soon! Love your detailed explanation with such beautiful pictures!

  9. says

    Lola, thank you so much for giving us so much info on how to cook Uzbek cuisine. I am getting ready for some shopping so I can make some somsa. I moved from Tashkent to Atlanta when I was 16. I crave uzbek food so much that I try to make something at least once a month. Plov and Lagman is my specialty :)
    Thank you, rahmat and spasibo again! About to make some tasty Somsa!

  10. Veronica says

    samsa with pumpkin was also very yummy in Tashkent .
    Blood trail is very artistic on pictures where you cut meat 😉

  11. DenaA says

    Your website is lovely. Can’t wait to try the recipes. What cut of lamb do you use for the Somsa??? Thanks, Dena

  12. Alireza says

    Hi, Lola!
    I was in Uzbekistan for about 4 years and I love the Uzbek cuisine especialy Somsa and Ash Polo.
    Thanks you for explanations…
    And also I am taking professional photography courses(online) at New York institute of Photography and a fan of your husband site. Wish you the best

  13. Marat says

    Katta raxmat for this Samsa recipe…My Mom used to make it for me when I lived in Tashkent.
    Since I am here all alone I followed your recipe and they turned out just like my Mom’s:) Too bad I can’t find “kurduchnoe salo” anywhere, so I put more butter inside:) Zakaz samsa!!!!
    Thank you again…


  14. Laura says

    Privet Lola,
    Just want to let you know I love your website and all of the great recipes you have bestowed to us :) I’ve tried several and they always turn out so delicious! A quick question about the puff pastry dough, it seems all the stores in my area only sell Pepperidge Farm sheets. Where do you buy your circle shaped dough? Or what brand is it?
    Thank you!

  15. Lisa says

    Thank you so much for posting this recipe. I changed the filling to ground beef and it turned out good.
    Too bad I can’t post a picture to this message. I really appreciate your recipe!

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