RECIPE: Momo (Nepalese Dumplings)

I’m posting this because (a) I love dumplings, and (b) I’ve been banging on about them for ages. Enjoy!

Ingredients

Bunch of spring onions

1 shallot

3 chillies

garlic

ginger

curry powder

garamassala

approx 600g meat (lamb or pork, or combination of the two) [or replace with selection of mushrooms]

plain flour, 4 cups

oil (canola works well, or vegie oil)

water

salt

 

Method: Dough

In a large bowl, combine 4 cups plain flour, a pinch of salt, and 1 Tbsp (or 2 dessertspoons) of oil. Use your judgement to combine water into a thick dough. Add it gradually, kneading it with your hand until all dry parts are mixed in. Once the dough has come together, knead it hard for five minutes, then cover and let sit for half an hour.

 

Method: Meat filling

Chop the spring onions, chillies, shallot really, really finely, until they’re sticky. Place in a large bowl.

Add minced garlic and minced ginger – about half a teaspoon of each, or to your taste.

Sprinkle in about 1 tsp of garamassala and hot curry powder.

Add pepper and salt if you wish (doesn’t need it, in my opinion)

Throw in the meat, and set your cutlery aside.

With your hand, mulch the meat into the rest of the filling, squelching it all through until it’s properly combined.

Set aside, for a while. It’s best to leave it in the fridge for about an hour, so flavours and textures consolidate, but it’s not really necessary.

 

Method: Piecing the momo together (method for each dumpling)

Pinch out about 1 inch round of dough and roll it into a ball. Flatten it on a floured board or bench.

With a rolling pin, begin carefully rolling the dough out from the middle to the edge. After one round, flip the dough over and do the same on the other side.

Continue doing this until the wrapper is larger around than a big mug. It should be thicker in the middle. This is important! It’s what gives the dumpling its stability.

Hold the wrapper in the palm of your non-dominant hand (for me, it’s my left hand), and put enough meat filling in to sit over the thick part of the dough.

Gradually fold, pinch, and twist (in that order) the dough closed over the top of the dumpling. With practise you’ll get a fluid motion happening. that enables you to fold, pinch, twist your way through a whole pile of them.

Continue on until all the dough and all the filling has been used. You might need to make a second batch of dough, depending on how big your dumplings are.

 

Method: Cooking the momo

Grease a steamer basket with a bit of oil (I prefer butter, myself). Set a steamer on the stove, over a really high heat, so your steamer basket is sitting over a rolling boil. Place a few momo in at a time, remembering that they will puff up slightly – so you don’t want them touching each other, lest they stick.

Cook covered for approx 5-10 mins. When they’re done, they’ll be all golden, puffy, tight and shiny.

Eat with soy sauce or any other of your favourite Asian dipping sauces. Or serve in a light tomato sauce.

 

Makes approximately 36 momo.

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