|Course||Appetizers or entrees|
|Place of origin||South Asia|
|Region or state||Tibet, Nepal, Bhutan, as well as Sikkim state and Darjeeling district of India|
|Creator||Tibetan diaspora in South Asia or Himalayan Newar merchants|
|Main ingredients||White-flour-and-water dough; meat, vegetable or cheese filling|
|Variations||Steam-momo, Kothey momo, C-momo, Fry-momo, Open-momo|
|350 to 1000 (35 to 100 per piece) kcal|
|Cookbook: Momo Media: Momo|
Momo (Nepali: मम; Nepal Bhasa: ममचा, मम:; Tibetan: མོག་མོག་, Wylie: mog mog; simplified Chinese: 馍馍; traditional Chinese: 饃饃; pinyin: mómo) is a type of South Asian dumpling; native to Tibet, Nepal, Bhutan, Sikkim state and Darjeeling district of India. It is similar to Chinese baozi and jiaozi, Mongolian buuz, Japanese gyoza and Korean mandu.
The dish is believed to be of Tibetan origin and since then has spread to other neighboring countries with the influx of Tibetan diaspora. Since this dish was initially popular among the Newar community of the Kathmandu Valley, one prevalent belief is that traveling Newar merchants brought the recipe and the name momo from Tibet where the Newar Merchants use go to trade. They modified the seasonings of the dish with available ingredients, such as water buffalo, and kept the same name.
Momo is a type of steamed bun with some form of filling. Momo has become a traditional delicacy in Nepal, Tibet and among Nepalese/Tibetan communities in Bhutan, as well as Sikkim state and Darjeeling district of India. It is one of the most popular fast foods in Nepal. Momos have also spread to other countries like United States (some parts), UK and India.
A simple white-flour-and-water dough is generally preferred to make the outer momo covering. Sometimes, a little yeast or baking soda is added to give a more doughy texture to the finished product. Monosodium glutamate (MSG) is also used sometimes to enhance the taste of momo.
Traditionally, momo is prepared with ground/minced meat filling, but over the past several years, this has changed and the fillings have become more elaborate. These days, momo is prepared with virtually any combination of ground meat, vegetables, tofu, paneer cheese, soft chhurpi (local hard cheese) and vegetable and meat combinations.
- Meat: Different types of meat fillings are popular in different regions. In Nepal, Tibet, Darjeeling district, Assam, Sikkim and Bhutan, pork, chicken, goat meat and buffalo meat are commonly used. In the Himalayan region of Nepal and Ladakh, India, lamb and yak meat are more common. Minced meat is combined with any or all of the following: onions/shallots, garlic, ginger and cilantro/coriander. Some people also add finely puréed tomatoes and soy sauce.
- Vegetables: Finely chopped cabbage, potato or chayote (iskush) are used as fillings in India and Nepal.
- Paneer: Paneer is another recent and popular filling in India.
- Cheese: Usually fresh cheese or the traditional soft chhurpi is used. This variety is common in India and Eastern Nepal.
- Khoa: Momo filled with milk solids mixed with sugar are popular as dessert in the Kathmandu valley.
- Mashed potato: Mashed potato (ālu) is another popular filling in the Kathmandu valley.
The dough is rolled into small circular flat pieces. The filling is then enclosed in the circular dough cover either in a round pocket or in a half-moon or crescent shape. People prefer meat that has a lot of fat because it produces intensively flavored juicy momos. A little oil is sometimes added to the lean ground/minced meat to keep the filling moist and juicy. The dumplings are then cooked by steaming over a soup (either a stock based on bones or vegetables) in a momo-making utensil called mucktoo. The dumplings may also be pan-fried or deep-fried after being steamed.
There are typically two types of momo, steamed and fried. Momo is usually served with a dipping sauce (locally called chutney/achhar), normally made with tomato as the base ingredient. Soup momo is a dish with steamed momo immersed in a meat broth. Pan-fried momo is also known as kothey momo. Steamed momo served in hot sauce is called C-momo. There are also a variety of Tibetan momos, including tingmo and thaipo.
- Jīn Péng 金鹏 (ed.): Zàngyǔ jiǎnzhì 藏语简志. Mínzú chūbǎnshè 民族出版社, Beijing 1983, p. 31. This is not the same as dumpling.
- Sijapati, Alisha (September 17, 2016). "A Juicy Love Affair". Retrieved September 22, 2016 – via The Kathmandu Post.
- "Momo recipe". Himalayanlearning.org. Retrieved April 6, 2011.
- Williams, James. "Momos Chutney Recipe". ReciPickr.com.
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