Vegan, Vegan Ingredients, Vegan Main Dishes

Tibetan Momo + Achar Dipping Sauce.

Here’s a really nice way to use Seitan.  I bought some the other day, I was intrigued…. and since then I’ve spent some time looking for ways to use it in an interesting way….and I think I’ve found one!  Momo!

steamed basmati + vegan seitan momo + achar sauce

These Vegan Momo are filled with ground Seitan, onions and shredded cabbage, and served with a seriously hot Achar dipping sauce.


Regarding Seitan:  According to Wikipedia: 

Wheat gluten, also called seitan (Japanese: セイタン), wheat meat, gluten meat, or simply gluten, is a food made from gluten, the main protein of wheat. It is made by washing wheat flour dough with water until all the starch granules have been removed, leaving the sticky insoluble gluten as an elastic mass which is then cooked before being eaten.

Wheat gluten is an alternative to soybean-based foods such as tofu, which are sometimes used as meat substitutes. Some types of wheat gluten have a chewy or stringy texture that resembles meat more than other substitutes. Wheat gluten is often used instead of meat in Asian, vegetarian, Buddhist, and macrobiotic cuisines. Mock duck is a common use for wheat gluten.

Wheat gluten first appeared during the 6th century as an ingredient for Chinese noodles. It has historically been popular in the cuisines of China, Japan and other East and Southeast Asian nations. In Asia, it is commonly found on the menus of restaurants catering primarily to Buddhist customers who do not eat meat.


I don’t miss meat, and therefore have little reason to seek out ingredients that have a resemblance to meat, but in the name of exploration, and wanting to have a varied and full vegan diet, I thought I’d try it.

The vegetarian Momo recipes I’ve come across all seem to feature tofu, but I thought that a Momo dumpling would be an ideal use for Seitan …… and I think, having concocted this recipe and tested it …… it is.

Momo traditionally tend to be a little bland, but the sauces they dip them in are full of flavour.

I made a traditional Achar Tomato and Chilli dipping sauce, using Green Chillies.

I love the pure, fresh heat of green chillies: it has an almost citrus tang, and goes very well with tomatoes.  Such a clean fiery chilli hit.   Fabulous.

Vegan Seitan Tibetan Momos+ Achar Sauce


Here what to do:


Makes 18-20: should be enough for 4


Momo Filling:

Seitan Pieces, Cabbage, Fresh Coriander, Garlic, Ginger, Onion
  • 180gms. green cabbage
  • 350gms. Seitan
  • 1 small onion
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 5cm. piece fresh ginger
  • 2 tbs. tamari/ soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp.pepper
  • 1/2tsp/ salt
  • 10gms.fresh coriander
  • 1.5 tbs. olive oil

Momo Dough:

  • 180-200gms. plain, all-purpose flour
  • 100-120ml. warm water
  • 1tsp.olive oil
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of pepper


  • 1.5 tbs.oil
  • 1 small onion
  • 3-4 large tomatoes
  • 2 tbs. tomato puree
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 4 finger green chillies
  •  juice 1 lime
  • 1-2 tbs. vinegar
  • 1 tsp.turmeric
  • 1 tbs. tamari
  • 1 scant tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 100ml. water



Momo Filling:

  • Wash and finely shred cabbage.
  • Finely chop onion.
  • Finely chop Seitan.

The preparation of these three items can be done by hand or in a food processor.  If in a food processor, shred cabbage and onion first then add strained Seitan Pieces and blitz until roughly ground.

  • Add 1.5 tbs. oil.  Mix well/ Blitz briefly.
Finely shredded cabbage, finely diced onion, ground seitan, finely chopped coriander, grated ginger and crushed
  • Peel and finely grate ginger, crush garlic cloves. Finely chop fresh coriander.  Add to Seitan Mix. Add Tamari/Soy + seasonings.  Briefly blitz, or mix thoroughly.
  • Cover, and allow to stand in a cool place, or refrigerate until ready to use.


Momo Dough:

  • Either by hand, or in a food processor with a dough blade, add flour, oil and seasonings.
  • Slowly add warm water until it forms a nice pliable dough.  Knead for  1-2 mins.  Add more flour if necessary.  The dough must be neither too sticky nor too dry.
  • Cover with damp kitchen towel and chill for 20 mins.


Prepare Achar.

  • Prick tomatoes with a sharp knife in several places and then immerse in boiled water for  10 mins.
  • Remove tomato skins, and, in a bowl, chop up tomatoes into small pieces, to a form a chunky ‘passata’.
  • Finely chop onion.
  • Finely chop green chillies.
  • Crush garlic cloves.
  • In a deep pan, on a medium heat, heat oil and then gently sauté onions: 3 mins.
  • Add garlic: saute 1 min.
  • Add turmeric : saute 30secs.
  • Add tomato passata + 2 tbs. tomato puree + 100ml. water.
  • Add chillies + salt and pepper.
  • Bring to a gentle simmer, and cook, on a very low heat, uncovered 40-60 mins.
  • Allow the sauce to gently reduce without fierce cooking and without burning.
  • 3 min. before serving, add juice 1 lime, 1tbs. tamarin/soy, and adjust seasoning according to taste.

Meanwhile….make the Momo.  Ha.

  • There are all sorts of youtube videos on how to make beautiful Momo, and I am not an expert.  However, I managed…..
  • On a floured board, hand-roll dough into a tube, and then slice into 18-20 pieces, all of the same size.
  • Roll out one piece into a circle about 7-9 cm. in diameter.
  • Place the circle of dough in your hand, and place a spoonful of Seitan Mix in the centre of the dough.  Then with your other hand, pleat the dough all the way round to form a little dumpling, which is entirely sealed.
  • Place on a plate, and keep Momo moist until ready to cook.  (Drape lightly damp kitchen towel over Momo).
  • Repeat Momo making process until all are ready.

( If serving with rice – prepare rice about now)

A bamboo steamer is the perfect steamer for Momo, but I don’t have one at the moment… so I used a double layered stainless steel steamer.

  • Either way: grease steamer base, so Momo won’t stick, and then place Momo in steamer making sure they don’t touch each other.
  • Steam Momo 12- 15 mins. Keep an eye on them as if they are over-steamed, the dough will become too tough… They are ready just when the dough looks dry…
  • If you have to steam them in batches, either keep them warm in a covered pot in a low oven, or eat as you go, while steaming the next batch…..
  • To savour a good Momo, it’s important that neither the dough nor the filling, dry out.

Despite the amateur appearance of my Momo…they do taste good.  And the sauce…is …well deliciously fiery 🙂

My To Do List: perfect Momo making abilities +Buy a bamboo steamer.












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