Deep fried Nepali MOMO
Dough for wrappers:
- 3 cup All-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 cup water
- Pinch of salt
- 2 lbs. lean ground lamb or chicken
- 1 cup onion, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup green onion, finely chopped
- 3 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon timur (szechwan pepper)
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 2 tablespoons curry powder
- 5 fresh red chilies, minced
- 3 tablespoons cooking oil
- Salt to taste
- 5 cups oil
Dough: In a large bowl combine flour, oil, salt and water. Mix well, knead until the dough becomes homogeneous in texture, about 8-10 min. Cover and let stand for at least 30 min. Knead well again before making wrappers.
Filling: In a large bowl combine all filling ingredients. Mix well, adjust for seasoning with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour to allow all ingredients to impart their unique flavors. This also improves the consistency of the filling.
Assembly: Give the dough a final knead. Prepare 1-in. dough balls. Take a ball, roll between your palms to spherical shape. Dust working board with dry flour. On the board gently flatten the ball with your palm to about 2-in circle. Make a few semi-flattened circles, cover with a bowl. Use a rolling pin to roll out each flattened circle into a wrapper. For well executed MOMO's, 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 steaming. 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 attains 3-in diameter circular shape. Repeat with the remaining semi-flattened dough circles. Cover with bowl to prevent from drying.
For packing hold wrapper on one palm, put one tablespoon of filling mixture and with the other hand bring all edges together to the center, making the pleats. Pinch and twist the pleats to ensure the absolute closure of the stuffed dumpling. This holds the key to good tasting, juicy dumplings.
In a deep frying pan, heat oil. Place freshly made dumplings in oil; fry until golden brown and cooked thoroughly. Remove fried MOMO's from oil and place on a sheet of paper towel to absorb excess oil. Serve immediately with tomato achar.