Rajma & Samosas Both Did Not Originate In India!

From rajma to samosa, these are the foods that have tricked you all your life!

Wait, what? Is this really happening? Are these dishes actually not Indian?

If these questions are running through your mind right now, then allow me to clear the air a bit. We’ve traded with many other cultures throughout our long history, and it’s quite natural that a few dishes exchanged hands along with other forms of knowledge.

Yes, there are dishes that are now part and parcel of Indian culinary culture, but actually didn’t originate here. Don’t you believe me? Then have a look at these two dishes that are not Indian-origin.


Tracing the origin of food is always fun and an interesting way to look at history.

One of the most favourite delicacies of our country, Rajma came to India only after the red kidney bean arrived from Central Mexico and Guatemala.  Surprised?

Rajma comprises of red kidney beans with many Indian spices and typically assisted with rice. Carried back to Europe by the Portuguese, it was first grown in Mexico and then reached us through the south-western coast of India.

The preparation method for it comes from overseas as well. Let’s start with, the kidney bean was brought to India from Portugal and the method of boiling beans and soaking is borrowed from Mexican recipes.

Cool, isn’t it?

One of the best things about India is that it welcomes everyone & everything with open arms. Even if you don’t belong to this country, you’ll become an integral part of it in no time!


Photo: bragstreet,in

Widely considered a quintessential Indian delicacy, few people know that the samosa does not have an Indian origin. Yes, you read that right. The deep-fried, yummy pack of spicy goodness that we thought belonged to India is actually a delicious and well-travelled immigrant from Central Asia!

A samosa is a fried or baked dish with a savoury filling, such as spiced potatoes, onions.  Triangular or tetrahedral in shape and often accompanied by a mint chutney, these are the perfect snack. This is one food that has travelled far and wide, and like any popular traveller has left its footprints along the way -from Egypt to Libya and from Central Asia to India.

Here’s the interesting story of our favourite samosa which ended the nation fall head over heels in love with itself. At first, Samsa, named after the pyramids in Central Asia, derived from the Persian word, ‘sanbosag’ in the 10th century.

Samosa came to India in 13th-14th century travelling from Egypt to Libya, Libya to Central Asia and Central Asia to India. The samosa was introduced to India during Delhi Sultanate rule by a Middle Eastern chef who migrated for employment during the Delhi Sultanate rule, although some accounts also credit merchants for bringing the fare to this part of the world. The samosa settled in the hearts of people everywhere, leading to the evolution of multiple regional versions.

A bunch of IITians has even dished out a social app called Samosa that aims to make chatting fun. The Samosa app shares proverbs, corny love messages. Asked what inspired them to choose this name, the founders answered, “While we were brainstorming to choose a name, someone ordered samosas, it was perfect as we wanted a name that was common and simple.”

As of now, you know the mesmerizing history of these enjoyable dishes. These dishes definitely need no special occasion to be served on to your plates. They’re now as Indian as are not born in India, but holds full citizenship rights.  They’ve become a part of our lives, our culture, and daily routine, and we’re going to eat huge amounts of them whenever we get the desire.

What is your favourite food?

Preview Photo: finedininglovers.com

Rishabh Kumar
Rishabh Kumar

A soon to be tech graduate who has a knack of writing and a sack full of dreams.

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