Momos – steamed dumplings from North East India are taking the rest of the country by storm. Literally. In Bangalore, any street is sure to have at least two momo-wallas putting up their stalls and by evening, one can see huge crowd around any such stall. Only two reasons for this. First, momos are utterly delicious. Secondly, they are cheap. The melt in the mouth momos with spicy fiery red chutney makes for a great snack any time of the day.
Being a very popular street food here in Bangalore, there are a lot of variations to Momos. The most basic one is the veg momo – simple and delicious. There are fancy versions like spinach, sweetcorn, tofu, paneer or chicken. Traditionally, Momos are steamed in bamboo steamers and kept warm until ready to be served. There is little use of oil and thus, momos are considerably healthy compared to other high calorie food. Of course, there is another version of momos – deep fried which is not healthy as the steamed version.
When Natascha posted about the Around the World Recipe Challenge, I immediately picked up Momos for I had wanted to give them a try since very long. This recipe is purely based on my instincts from trying 10s & 100s of momos from our local momo-walla and how he prepares momos 🙂
Making momos takes a lot of patience and practice. This is probably my third attempt making momos at home and with every trial, it gets a tad bit easier. One of the important things in getting the momos right depends on how thin the outer layer is. When the momos are steamed, the outer layer should become translucent, revealing the contents. Trust me, it is hard getting the texture right with the first attempt. Roll the dough thick, you would end with rubbery, leathery outer coating. Roll it too thin, it can easily be torn while making the momos. With little practice and patience however, anyone can master this.
To make Vegetable Momos | Street Food Special Veg Momos
What I used –
For the Outer Covering –
- All Purpose Flour, 1 cup
- Salt, as required
- Oil, 1 tsp
- Water, as required
For the Momo Stuffing –
- Onion, 1 medium
- Garlic Pods, 3-4
- Carrot, 1 medium
- French Beans, 4-5
- Cabbage, a small chunk (should be less than a cup when chopped)
- Spring Onions, few
- Soy Sauce, ½ tsp
- White/Black Pepper Powder, ¼ tsp
- Salt, as needed
- Oil, 1 tsp + 1 tsp (for oiling the steamer plates)
Prep Work –
1. Finely chop all the vegetables. Chop the onion and garlic finely as well. Set aside.
2. In a bowl, add all-purpose flour and salt. Adding water little by little, knead the dough soft and firm. There should not be any cracks and the dough should be pliable. Add 1 tsp of oil and knead again. Set this aside for ten mins.
How I made –
1. In a pan heat 1 tsp of oil. Add finely chopped garlic and fry for few seconds. Add finely chopped onions and fry until translucent. Add finely chopped vegetables, add salt required and stir fry for 5-7 mins on low flame. Add soy sauce, pepper powder, chopped spring onion and stir fry for a couple of minutes. Remove from flame and let this mixture cool down completely.
2. Roll the prepared dough into a log and cut it into equal sized roundels. Roll each cut piece into a ball and set aside. The balls should be couple of cms in diameter.
3. Take a ball of dough and roll it as thin as possible. When the rolled sheet is lifted, it should look like a sheet of paper. Apply oil/flour on the surface of the dough if it is sticky while rolling. Place a tsp of the prepared veggie stuffing in the center of the rolled dough. To start making the momo, take an edge of the rolled dough and form pleats one after another, while pressing them together. Bring the pleats together and seal them at the top by giving a quick twist. Repeat this with the rest of the momos.
4. Meanwhile, get the steamer (I used my idli steamer) boiling. Oil the steamer plates (idli plates in my case) and place the prepared momos. Steam cook for 7-10 mins or until the momos look translucent and have a shiny gloss. Remove from heat.
5. Serve hot with chilly garlic chutney.
- The key to getting the momos right lies in how thin the dough is rolled.
- While making veggie momos, cabbage quantity is always more than the rest of the vegetables. Always, the choice of veggies is per personal preference.
- Forming the pleats in momos comes with practice. Start from an edge and keep pleating until the momo is sealed.
- Having too much of dough at the crown of the momo would not taste too good. So use smaller sized ball of dough and have enough filling so that there isnt much dough left at the top after pleating.
- Oil the steamer plate so that the momos don’t stick to each other or to the plate.
- Don’t over steam the momos as they can become a bit hard.