As salam alaikum brothers and sistars,
Let’s get straight to it…fried food is not doing you any favors during Ramadhan
We need to float like a butterfly and sting like a bee and flex and bend and take the best form our treasure chest of cultures
In African Arab culture there is a finger food snack called fataya which is a baked samosa.
In Senegal they are filled with a spicy fish filling and the Arabs fill them with delicious
cooked spinach and feta cheese,
you could put saga aloo or regular samosa filling or even sweetie fruit versions.
so get the oven on and lets go!
These are Fruit Filled Fataya
Ramadhan Get Ready – Fataya
This is fantastic suggestion for those of us who just can’t do with a samosa at iftar (breaking fast time) during Ramadhan.
There are certain things I love about the Arabs; our beloved prophet Muhammad salah la alaihi wa salaam, and these baked morsel finger foods called fataya.
They are baked not fried samosa, made from wholewheat bread dough and not cheap white flaky pastry, which makes them halal and tayyib.
quality over quantity is the message of the day.
Traditional they are filled with feta cheese and spinach but we are here to break rules and I recently found out that they made a spicy fish version in Senegal, where they are sometimes called pastels. Fish Fataya, that sounds great but high acid content so in shaa Allah we will make and post and add green peas which are an alkaline food
You can add yoghurt, egg, bicarbonate of soda into the flour but none of that is necessary.
We used whole meal flour instead of the cheap white nasty flour as its health benefits are that it contain fibre and minerals that are necessary for good health and are traditionally Islamic.
Prophet Muhammad, salah al alaihi wa salem never ate refined flour and only ate wholemeal for three days before changing to another grain, I will post another post with the hadith evidence for this in shaa Allah.
BEFORE YOU START PUT OVEN ON GAS MARK 6 /400 F/ 200 C MODERATELY HOT
Recipe for bread dough
Ingredients for the pastry
- 1 cup warm water.
- 1-3 teaspoons dry yeast.
- 1 teaspoon salt.
- 1 teaspoon honey.
- 5 cups wholemeal flour
- 1-2 more cups of water
- you can add extra health benefits by adding things like ajwain seeds, haldi, tumeric
Ingredients for Filling
- 1 x 200g packet of feta cheese
- 450 g of frozen spinach or equivalent
- 1 table spoon of olive oil
- 3 onions finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg, it is halal in small quantities meaning 20% of less of total mixture
- 1 teaspoon of black pepper
- 1 teaspoon of turmeric for colour and benefits
Method the dough
- in a big bowl combine warm water, yeast , sugar and 1 cup of in a cup and leave for a few hours/overnight in a warm place to ferment ( its halal, fermentation )
- add flour and dry ingredients (turmeric, salt) and mix
- add the yeast mixture and stir in
- Start adding the rest of the water into the flour mix and mix together with your hands till all ingredients come together without sticking to your fingers too much
- if it’s too sticky add a bit more flour still you can mix and pound the dough around in the bowl in one piece
- place a clean tea cloth over the dough ball and leave to rise for an hour while you make filling
Method the filling
- take spinach out of the fridge and leave to start de-frosting
- Wash, peel and chop the onions fine squares about 1/2- 1 cm pieces
- Add olive oil to large frying pan and turn on medium heat
- add onions and stir oil over all onions as quickly as possible
- cook on medium heat till golden and soft
- add the pepper and nutmeg and stir in
- add the spinach and cover pan and turn on low heat to continue defrosting
- when the spinach has soften stir into onion mixture
- crumbled feta cheese into small piece on a separate plate then sprinkle half of it over spinach mix and stir, then add the rest and stir,
- leave to cool and go back to the dough which should have risen by now
Making The Fataya
1.break the dough into small pieces like ping pong balls about 3 cm in diameter across
2.put flour on the worktop or board you are using to roll out the dough balls and roll into
8 cm circles, don’t worry if they are not perfect circles.
3.place a heap dessert spoon of the filling into the centre of the dough circle
4.draw the bottom side upwards the center and then the right side pull it inwards to start making a triangle, pinch these two sides together but only to the centre of the samosa/fataya.
5.finally pull the last left side across ,.still making a triangle shape and pinch the remaining open sides together and place on flat greased baking tray.
6. repeat filling and making fataya/samosas till baking tray is filled and place into oven
7.Place in oven for 20 minutes until golden brown, you can brush the fataya with mixed egg and milk mixture but not necessary.
Once you get the hang of these delicious finger foods you will wonder why you ever messed your body up with frying and free radical before…baking always fills a house with a lovely homely smell..enjoy honeys and give thanks to Allah