Last year my husband and I , we went to Alaska to celebrate his birthday. I was dying to take this trip. We had booked our tickets one month before the trip and I had started searching places to stay and booked them as well. As we were into all these preparations for the trip, I also try to make sure that I find out some good places to eat wherever we are going. So, it wasn’t different this time that I did some research for our trip. So, finally when we headed to Alaska, one of the places that we were visiting was a small but beautiful village known as Talkeetna. I have to admit Talkeetna was full of tourists and so many youngsters mostly all students who moved their in summer for jobs. As there would be lots of tourists and we all know the time zone in Alaska specially during summers there would be sunlight till late night.It was the best place to be if you love day light. So, there were lots of awesome places to eat. We could not stuff our faceswith so many really good restaurants. But, one of the days we parked our car and were heading towards Talkeetna Roadhouse to grab something for lunch. As we were passing I smelled something terrific, something so hot and spicy and so much so like Indian. Seriously. I am not kidding it just smelled so good. I was not craving Indian food, but I was definitely wanting to eat something spicy and simple. That smell registered in my mind and I saw a small sign on the road saying The Dumpling Man. The next day we were again roaming around on the same street to buy something for souvenirs to take home with us. And, for lunch I had decided to give those dumplings a try. I went their , checked out their menu and immediately saw these spicy currylicious dumpling and went ahead and ordered them. I cannot describe the moment these were in front of me hot and spicy on the bed of red lettuce and a dollop of sour cream and cilantro. I was in heaven. So, let me say more about this place so I interacted with the guy behind this small closet kitchen , and yes, the seating was outside in alley with just two or three tables. They sold these simple and hearty Russian dumplings with varied sauces and fillings but which had some fusion to it. After we came home , I tried preparing them. Although, they weren’t the exact same but I am sure they are the closest that I could prepare in taste.
Here’s the recipe.
The dough for the dumplings:
- 1 1/2 – cup All Purpose flour
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 tsp salt
Filling and the sauce:
- 2 to 3 medium sized boiled and mashed potatoes
- 1 chopped onion
- Salt to taste
- 1 tsp Black pepper, crushed
- 2 tsp oil
- 2 tbsp red chili paste
- 2 tsp – white vinegar
- 2 tbsp Garlic butter, (you can mix garlic paste to butter and make garlic butter )6-7 cloves garlic paste into 1 stick of butter.
- 1 tsp or little more smoked paprika
- 2 tsp curry powder
- pinch of salt
- red lettuce shredded, optional
- sour cream, optional
- cilantro for garnish, optional
Take all purpose flour add salt, make a well, add eggs to in the well and start whisking the eggs with a fork and incorporating the four and eggs and add some water as well. and, knead a smooth dough, just like pasta dough. cover it and leave it aside for at least half an hour.
Take boiled potatoes and mash them. In a pan, take some oil and saute the chopped onions and once they turn translucent , add them to potatoes along with slat and pepper. Mix it well. leave it aside.
Roll the dough onto a big disc, and start placing the filling, 1 tsp of filling per dumpling is enough ,leaving some space to cut them into dumplings. If you have a ravioli maker, then you can use that as well. Or do one at time. But, this method saves lot of time and make a big batch. Roll out another piece of dough into that same size and gently cover it on that filling. Slightly press the edges around each and every filling and cut them into rounds or square with the help of knife or pizza cutter. Once you have made several of these, make them and cover them so that they do not dry out.
Take salted boiling water , and boil these dumplings for about 3 – 4 minutes till they are al dente. They would start floating once they are boiled but keep stirring so that they do not stick to the bottom of the pan. Remove them with the help of slotted spoon.
On the other hand, while your dumplings are boiling , you can make the sauce. Take red chili paste – the ready made version easily available in the stores.add in the vinegar, and heat it a little bit add the garlic butter and once the kitchen starts smelling garlicky add in the curry powder, paprika and mix it well. season it. Immediately add in the dumplings. Again mix it well. At first it would all look watery , but the trick is to let it cook for just 2 minutes on a very slow flame and get that slightly burnt caramelized flavor. All the water would evaporate and the garlic and spices would stick to the dumplings.
Place the dumplings on a bed of shredded red lettuce, top it of with some sour cream and cilantro. If you do not like sour cream , you can have it with mayonnaise as well. Feel free to use any other herbs or scallions. etc.
Note: The dough yields more dumplings , so you can roll them stuff them and freeze them if you want to make a big batch and store them for future use. It becomes an easy weeknight dinner along with with some salad. You just need to defrost them before boiling whenever you plan to eat them. To freeze – Just lay out each of them on a tray and freeze them until they become hard, transfer them to ziplock bags and then store them in the deep freezer.