Bhutan is situated in the Himalayas, bordered by China and India. According to a 2006 survey, Bhutan is the 8th happiest country in the world. And after eating tonight’s dumplings I see why!
One of the first dishes I came across in my research were dumplings called momo. I’m a bit of a dumpling fiend so my research stopped there. Momo are the most popular ‘fast food’ in Bhutan.
The traditional filing of the momo is yak, beef, vegetables or cheese. My village butcher was sadly yak-less this week so I opted for beef instead. I mixed around 300g of minced beef with half a chopped onion, some spring onions, garlic and chili. I flavoured the mix with Chinese wine (Xiaosing) and soy sauce. I made the filling, mixed it together then left it overnight for the flavours to infuse. It smelt amazing by the time I came to make them tonight. I had some Indian paneer cheese in the freezer and assumed it would be similar to the cheese found in Bhutan so made a few momos with cheese, white onion and spring onion.
I cheated with the wrappers and used some pre-made dumplings skins from our last jaunt to China Town in Manchester. The momo can either be formed into half-moon shaped parcels or pinched at the top to form a purse-like shape. I made a few of each. I used the crimping tool which I’ve mentioned before which makes forming the dumplings an absolute doddle!
The momo can be steamed (for around 30 minutes) or fried. Again, I tried a few of each. Both were tasty; the steamed ones were more juicy but the fried ones had a nicer flavour on the outside.
Momos are served with a dipping sauce. The first one I found was a chutney-like consistency sauce made from tomato, chili, garlic and coriander. I opted for a lighter dip of 50:50 soy sauce and rice wine vinegar with a dash of chili oil added.
This meal was always going to be a winner; I love Asian food and any sort of dumplings. As expected it was amazing! I was surprised just how quick it was to make, especially using the pre-bought dumpling skins and the crimping device.