2 pounds ground chicken (you can also use pork, lamb, turkey, or tofu)
2 tablespoons garlic, minced
2 tablespoons ginger, minced
1 onion, finely chopped
6 scallions, thinly sliced
3 shallots, minced
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon Szechuan pepper (you can substitute black pepper if you can’t find Szechuan)
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon turmeric
1 tablespoon coriander, ground
1 teaspoon ground Thai chili
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons ghee, butter or oil
For making wonton wrappers:
4 cups all purpose flour
1 ½ cups water (room temperature)
Every culture seems to have its version of the tasty little dumpling. This recipe is the Nepalese version, stuffed full of ground meat and spices. In Nepali families, making momos is a bonding affair, as the whole family comes together in the kitchen to make these delicious, cute-as-a-button little pouches.
Momos are meant to fill your mouth with spicy goodness, so to eat a momo in traditional Nepali style, you pop the whole thing in your mouth at once. Chewing into the soft, doughy wrapper will illustrate why, as juices escape, emitting fragrance and meaty blissfulness that will force your eyes closed with an involuntary hum of approval.
Making your own wonton dough
In a large bowl, combine the flour and water. Knead the dough with your hands until it becomes somewhat firm. Cover the dough and set it aside for 1 hour. When the dough is ready, divide it into small balls. Roll the balls out into 4-inch discs. Cover the stack of dough rounds with a moist kitchen towel and set them aside while preparing the other ingredients.
Prepping and chopping
Use a mortar and pestle to grind any whole spices needed.
Peel and mince the garlic, ginger and shallots.
Peel and finely chop the onion.
Finely slice the scallions.
Use your hands to knead and mix the ingredients until well blended.
In a steamer pan, bring 1 inch of water to a simmer. Wipe down the steamer surface lightly with oil, or spray with non-stick.
To make your first momo, remove 1 wonton dough wrapper from the stack. Dab a bit of water around the edges of the wrapper.
Scoop 1 teaspoon of meat mixture into the center of the wrapper. Using your thumb and forefinger, fold in the edges of the circle and pull them up. Pinch together at the top to form a little purse or satchel. Place your closed momo on the greased surface of the steamer tray. Repeat this process to make your remaining momos.
Cover the pan and steam the momos over medium heat for 8 – 10 minutes.
Serve hot with your favorite chutney or dipping sauce.