Of course, steamers are so synonymous to momos that all steamers are referred to as momo steamers. Whether it’s veg, buff, chicken, paneer or pork, or even chocolate momos, they are the most popular steamed dish in Nepal. Momos or dumplings can come in many varieties like fillings and come in different sizes but the best ones are always steamed for just the right moment.
Yomari is a crowd favorite and they are much sought after during the time of Yomari festival in December. Yomari is made of rice flour and filled with chaku before it is closed up and placed on the steamer. You can tell when a yomari is ready by looking at the glistening surface. If the surface of the momo is not glossy, it means that it still needs time to cook.
Tingmo or better known as T:momo is a Tibetan steamed bun dish that is light, fluffy and melts in the mouth. It is prepared from wheat flour (maida) and the addition of yeast makes it soft and fluffy. Some people say that the word tingmo comes from ‘tingba’, Tibetan for ‘cloud’, and momo, which means ‘dumpling’. The bread is traditionally eaten with spicy curries.
Bhakka is a steamed rice flour cake which is a traditional delicacy of the Tharu community. This dish is typically eaten as a breakfast for as a snack along with a dalop of freshly ground tomato pickle. This dish is found commonly in cities of Terai but it is gaining popularity in other parts of Nepal as well. For bhakka, rice flour is prepared from milling soaked rice, and sieved through which forms small sand-sized grits. It is then lightly compacted in a small bowl and steamed. Traditionally, a clay pot is used to steam bhakka but it can also be cooked using a momo steamer.
Da Pau or Da Bao is a big version of the momo. Traditionally originating from China, Da Bao actually means big bun. It has a soft and chewy exterior filled with grounded meat, vegetables or shrimp. The Da Pau uses fully fermented dough, giving it a less dense texture. While Da Pau is not yet very popular as a homemade dish, it can be found in restaurants around the city.