Sunday, May 26, 2013

Momo: A Typical Tibetan Dish of the Himalayas

Undoubtedly one of the great pleasures of traveling to exotic places is to taste its rich and varied cuisine. It is an experience that always brings new flavors to our palate and knowledge. Today we travel to Tibet to tell you about a typical food of the region that those who visit it should not stop trying. Actually, it is not one of the strangest foods in the widest sense of the word that exists in this area of ​China. It is so cheap it is the star dish of Tibetan cuisine, and also of Nepalese cuisine and West Bengal region (particularly Darjeeling).

They are called momos although the pronunciation is somewhat different. In Tibet and the places where they eat everyone knows them as so-so. The variants and the ingredients from which the filling is formed also vary considerably according to the restaurant where they are served. I also like to snoop in Kathmandu, among the street vendors, who prepare hundreds at a time in huge metal steamers. I always have the feeling of being able to eat dozens.

Similar to the jiaozi of Chinese cuisine, momos are traditionally made from barley flour mixed with water. From this preparation a white dough is obtained which must be flattened on a smooth surface in the manner of conventional bread. Once kneaded and flattened, it will be necessary to cut it into small pieces or portions, ready to be refilled. Whatever the main ingredient chosen, it is always seasoned with different spices that give it its characteristic flavor.

Chicken Momo Recipe

Once stuffed and closed, the momo is cooked in a steaming pot, where in a few minutes they come out ready to be savored. Normally, the cook serves them in a small dish or disposable container (in the case of street carts) and serves them with a tasty soup.

Depending on the region of the Himalayas in question, the filling of the momo is different. They are steamed or fried, with a vegetable filling or sometimes with buffalo or chicken meat. Although it is usually made of minced lamb or pork. However, there are also important variants such as those filled with cheese or vegetables for vegetarians. Normally you can choose the filling although in some street stalls there is only one class. If you are not scrupulous it will be in these improvised places in the streets where it will be cheaper to eat a plate of momos.

Kalyan Panja
Kalyan Panja is a photographer and a travel writer sharing stories and experiences through photographs and words