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Mastering Momos

Momos are small, steamed dumplings that come, roughly speaking, from the region of the Himalayas. Further north and east, the Chinese have a fantastic range of similar dumplings; my source recipe is actually Rick Stein’s India and I was first inspired to attempt them after enjoying some fantastic momos from the Tibetan food stall at the Rabbit Hole Festival I played with The String Project last autumn.

A momo consists of a thin dough wrapped around a small amount of filling, ideally served up with a fiery dipping sauce and sprinkled with fresh coriander. I’ve had a couple of goes in the past but, both times, I tried to squeeze too many into the steamer and ended up making a mess when extracting them. This time round, I limited myself to four at a time and, finally, got results I was pleased with.

The dough is just plain flour, water, some baking powder and a tiny amount of salt – last night I used 125g, 75g, 0.5 tsp and a pinch respectively. Enough of the water is used to bring the dough together without making it too sticky and it is covered and set aside after couple of minutes of kneading. That was enough to divide into eight small balls, which I flattened out with the help of my pasta roller, working down to a thin setting. The filling was a mixture of onion, garlic, mushroom and beans, cooked and smoothed into a paste in a food processor. For the sauce, I ground up some chilli with salt, then added soft brown sugar, loosening up to a thin consistency with red wine vinegar and some cheap sherry.

Given the tiny amount of filling required, it is a cheap recipe; my next challenge is to practise enough that I reduce the time it takes as well.

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