Indian Street food, samosas, a triangular-shaped item filled with spicy aloo sabzi on the inside and crunchy outside are a delicacy in India. This food item, along with many others, has managed to cross borders and find a space for itself in foreign markets.
However, in an African country samosas are banned! The country is Somalia.
Why Are Samosas Banned?
Terming the delicacy “western”, Somalia’s extremist Islam fighters have banned samosas in the country since 2011. Al-Shabaab, the Islamist fundamentalist group which has links with Al-Qaeda in Somalia controls a major part of the country.
The reason for the ban, as reported by the media, is that the triangular shape of the food item is what made them upset as it is similar to the Christian trinity. Any person who is caught making and/or consuming samosas is punished.
Know A Little About The Country
Located in the Horn of Africa, Somalia has been a part of the Arab League since 1974. The country is also a part of the African Union, the Organization of Islamic Conference, and the United Nation.
The country follows burial systems which can be identified through the cemeteries dating back to the 4th millennium BC. Once there used to be tombs, ruins, and walls like the Wargaade Wall which signifies that there once used to be a sophisticated civilization in the Somali peninsula. From 1150 to 1259, Islam flourished in the country.
Also Read: Watch: 7 Indian Dishes That Are Not Indian
Tale of Samosas
The love we Indians possess for samosas is unmeasurable and you’ll find this food item in every nook and corner of India.
However, the food item which is thought to have originated in India was introduced to us by Middle Eastern chefs who had migrated to India during the rule of the Delhi Sultanate. Soon after its arrival in India, the dish garnered love from Indian royalty and became an essential component of their diet.
According to Ibn Batuta, the medieval Moroccan traveller who had visited India in the 14th century described Samosas or Sambusak (as they were initially known), a triangular pastry filled with mince, peas, pistachios, almonds, and more; that was offered to guests soon after they had sipped the sherbet.
Amir Khusrau, a Sufi scholar, musician, and poet framed a riddle for the samosas that goes like this- “Samosa kyun na khaya? Joota kyun na pehna? Talaa na tha.”
This means why samosa wasn’t eaten or why the shoe wasn’t worn. The answer is that the samosa wasn’t fried and the shoe didn’t have a sole. Both terms, fried and sole are called talaa in the Hindi language.
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