CUMIN LAMB DUMPLINGS WITH MINT YOGURT
We love how this dish showcases local lamb with some of its best friends across global cuisines. We season the lamb briskly with cumin, a nod to the northwestern Chinese region of Xinjiang and the lamb and cumin stir-fries of the Uyghur people. Adding to the sensory experience are the aromatic tingles of Sichuan peppercorn and fiery breath of chili that together characterize Sichuan cooking. We veer away from China with a cooling sauce that salutes the traditional English pairing of lamb with mint while celebrating the Mediterranean love affair of lamb and yoghurt.
1 heaping teaspoon (2 g) Sichuan peppercorns
2 teaspoons (5 g) cumin seeds
1 small dried red chile or 1 teaspoon chili flakes (2 g), or more if desired
10 ounces (285 g) ground lamb
1/4 small onion, diced
1 teaspoon (5 g) fish sauce
1 1/2 tablespoons (22 g) soy sauce
1 recipe Hot Water Dough (see Hot Water Dough blog post) or 24 store-bought dumpling wrappers
Neutral oil, such as canola, for cooking
MINT YOGURT INGREDIENTS
1/2 cup (about 12 sprigs) fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
1 cup (227 g) plain whole Greek yogurt, or strained yogurt
1 clove garlic, finely minced or grated
Combine the Sichuan peppercorns, cumin seeds, and chile in a small skillet over medium heat. Toast until fragrant, about 2 minutes, shaking the pan occasionally. Let cool, then grind in a mortar and pestle or spice grinder.
Combine the lamb, onion, fish sauce, and soy sauce in a large bowl, add the ground spices, and mix thoroughly. Fry a small piece in a pan to check for seasonings; you may not need additional salt as the fish sauce and soy sauce will help season the mixture. Follow the instructions for rolling and cooking dumplings (see Dumpling Making blog post). Serve with the mint yogurt for dipping.
MINT YOGURT INSTRUCTIONS
Combine all the ingredients in a small bowl and add a good pinch of salt. Taste for seasoning and adjust as needed, then let sit for at least 15 minutes or up to overnight in the refrigerator before serving.
Makes about 24 dumplings
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