All of 4 years, a bundle of energy, irresistibly cute and disarmingly charming, this little girl can make any man weak in the knees. Really. No exaggeration. The husband transformed into an instant hopeless fan the moment he set his eyes on her.
Dear readers, this post is dedicated to my little niece, Kaeya. A self confessed ‘MOMO’ freak. These little steamed delights are her all time absolute favorites. She invaded my mind all the while I dished up this Tibetan delicacy.
Miles between us, but how I wished I could send a box full of soft melt in the mouth dimsums to her. I can almost hear her shrieking with glee. I see her savoring each bite with such mindfulness that you would be satiated just looking at her 🙂
Yes, she is that magnetic.
No, it’s not her birthday or her first day of school or any special day for me to remember her.
It’s one of those days, when you just do. When you just remember someone, simply because you miss them. Don’t need a birthday or a friendship day or a valentine day to acknowledge another’s presence in our life. It’s one of those days when you simply wish they were here with you.
I made an ingratiating red garlic chili tomato dip to serve these hot dumplings. Pounded garlic and kashmiri red chilies in a bed of tomatoes, infused with a lot of sesame oil sure adds a very winning accompaniment to the momo mania. Usually kids relish the dimsums as it is, without a dip. But Milee, my 6 year old licks this sauce more than her peers. What can I say?! She has one different palette!
For MOMO making step by step pictures, refer here.
For the wrapper:
- 1/2 cup to 3/4 cup plain flour/maida
- salt to taste
- 2 tsp oil
- luke warm water to knead.
For the stuffing:
- 1 tbsp oil
- 5-6 cloves minced garlic
- 1 big onion minced
- 1 cup grated cabbage
- 1/2 cup grated carrots
- 10-12 french beans, minced
- 1 small bell pepper, minced – I used red bell pepper
- 3-4 tbsp spring onion/scallion leaves
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2-3 green chilies, minced – optional
- 1 tsp soy sauce
Mix flour, salt, oil and little warm water to make a soft pliable dough. Knead for at least 2 minutes. Keep aside.
Now to make the filling:
Heat oil. Saute garlic, green chili(if using) and onions. Once almost pinkish, then add the rest of the grated minced veggies and stir fry till 3/4th done. Sprinkle soy sauce, salt and pepper. Top with scallions leaves. Mix well. Cool the mixture. Keep aside.
Now to make the Dimsums:
I grabbed huge handfuls of the dough. With help of more plain flour, I rolled out real thin big huge rounds. The husband likes the wrapper thin, he doesn’t like the doughy taste of the cover. So, it’s a task to thin as possible without tearing. Then I used a round cookie cutter or a steel bowl/katori, and cut out small several rounds.
On each round, place a few spoon fulls of filling, and gently close the circle encompassing the stuffing into a little pointed bag.
Once you have 6-7 momos ready, steam them for 5-7 minutes, ideally in a bamboo steamer(How, I wish I owned one!), but since most of us don’t have one, we improvise.
An idli maker or your khaman dhokla maker works absolutely fine in such a situation.
Now for the Red Chili Tomato Sauce:
Soak 10-12 kashmiri red chilies for 10 minutes. In a blender, chop up two red ripe tomatoes, add 12-15 cloves of garlic, soaked red chili and a tiny piece of ginger. With out adding any water, grind into a paste. Heat 3 tbsp of sesame oil in a wok, saute one chopped onion. Add the tomato-garlic-red chili paste. Boil well till the oil leaves the sides. Season with salt. Keeps good for at least a month, in the refrigerator.
A long chat with the very talkative, tale spinner. The phone passing many hands, the conversation abruptly ending many times, the loud chitter chatter, the mother( READ: sometimes mine, sometimes my daughter’s, sometimes my niece’s) complaining. Sisters sharing small stories and laughter – A very fitting end to a very dreamy long reminiscing day.