Momos, chutneys and aloo achar – it’s snack time with a Himalayan twist.

momo

In this special edition of the Menu, our friends at Café Kathmandu and Indian Summer Festival share recipes for delicious Nepali street food. Created by Chef Abi Sharma, these snacks are perfect served with a cup of chai for afternoon tea, or as an appetizer for your next summer soiree.

 

Momo

Dough for wrappers:
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon cooking oil
Water
Salt to taste

Filling:
2 lbs. lean ground meat of your choice for meat momo, or extra-firm ground tofu for vegetarian momo
1 cup onion finely chopped
1 cup cabbage finely chopped
¼ cup carrot grated for vegetarian momo only
¼ cup mashed potato for vegetarian momo only
1 teaspoon ginger very finely chopped
1 teaspoon minced garlic
½ teaspoon each of cumin, coriander and ¼ curry powder
3 tablespoon cooking oil
¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
Salt to taste

1. In a large bowl combine flour, oil, salt and water. Mix well; knead until the dough becomes even in texture, about 10-12 minutes. Cover and freeze at least 30 minutes. Knead again before making wrappers.

2. For the filling, combine all of the filling ingredients, mixing well and adjusting the seasoning with salt. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to allow the flavours to develop. Note: Be sure to follow the ingredients list for meat or vegetarian momos.

3. Dust your clean counter or working board with flour. After kneading the cold dough, create 1 – inch dough balls. Gently flatten each ball with your palm to create a 2 – inch circle and set aside on the counter, covering with a bowl.

4. Use a rolling pin to roll out each flattened circle into a wrapper. For well executed Momos, it is essential that the middle portion of the wrapper be slightly thicker than the edges to ensure the structural integrity of dumplings during packing and seaming. Hold the edges of the semi- flattened dough with one hand and with the other hand begin rolling the edges of the dough out, swirling a bit at a time. Continue until the wrapper grows to about 3 inches in diameter.

5. Repeat with the remaining semi-flattened dough circles and cover the circles with a bowl to prevent from them from drying.

6. Assembly time. Hold the wrapper on one palm and place one tablespoon of the filling mixture in the centre. With the other hand, bring all of the edges together to the center, making pleats. Pinch and twist the pleats to ensure the stuffed dumplings are completely closed.

7. Heat up a steamer to a good boiling; oil the steamer rack well to prevent dumplings from sticking. Arrange uncooked dumplings in the steamer, close the lid and steam until the dumplings are cooked through, about 8-10 minutes. Take dumplings off the steamer and serve immediately.

To serve, arrange the cooked Momos on a serving plate with tomato and cilantro chutney (recipes below). Serves 4 – 6 people.

Tomato Chutney
2 tomatoes
1 piece garlic
1 piece of peeled ginger
¼ teaspoon of Himalayan peppercorn powder
½ tablespoon cooking oil
Salt to taste

Cilantro Chutney
1 bunch of fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons freshly toasted sesame seeds grinded
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
¼ tablespoon Himalayan peppercorn powder
½ tablespoon cooking oil
Salt to taste

Instructions for both chutneys: Mix all ingredients in a food processor and grind until a creamy sauce emergences. Place the chutney in a serving dish and serve.

 

Nepalese_Food

Aloo Achaar

8-10 medium-sized russet potatoes
1/4 cup brown sesame seeds
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
3-4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1-2 tablespoon cooking oil
Fresh cilantro leaves for garnish
1 tablespoon lemon juice
¼ Himalayan pepper powder
½ tablespoon salt to taste
¼ teaspoon fenugreek seeds
Salt to taste

1. Boil the potatoes until al dente and then drain the water. Let the potatoes cool before peeling and cutting them into approximately 1 inch cubes.

2. Place the sesame seeds in a cast iron pan and roast until they look well roasted and start to crack. Remove the pan from heat and let the sesame seeds cool. Grind the seeds into a fine powder.

3. Add the ground sesame seeds, salt, turmeric, lemon juice and Himalayan peppercorn powder to the potatoes and mix well in a big bowl. Heat a cast iron pan and add 2 tablespoons of cooking oil. Add ¼ teaspoon of fenugreek seeds and wait until they starts to crack and turn brown. Remove from heat and add the seeds to the potatoes and mix thoroughly.

Place the potatoes in a serving bowl and garnish with cilantro leaves. Serve warm or chilled. Enjoy!

 

No time to cook? Join us at the Indian Summer Festival Opening Gala in Vancouver on July 4, where celebrity chef Vikram Vij and others (including Chef Abi Sharma) will take you on a culinary tour around South Asia. Buy your tickets.

*These recipes have not been tested by the Jugni Style team, but were provided by the fantastic head chef and owner of Cafe Kathmandu, Abi Sharma, for your cooking pleasure.

Photography: Embassy of Nepal