Courtesy Himalayan Restaurant
Just as we were becoming familiar with xiao long bao
(soup dumplings) courtesy of the great new Chinese noodle shop LJ Shanghai
, along comes another exotic dumpling with which to get acquainted. Momo
are Nepali-Tibetan dumplings, and they have been making quite the splash down in Columbus, where a tiny food stall tucked into a sprawling international foods warehouse is one of the top-rated eateries in the entire city. Folks queue up to Momo Ghar mainly for one thing: Nepalese dumplings drowned in a spicy sauce. The shop flies through literally thousands of handmade momo per day.
With the recent opening of Himalayan Restaurant
(13124 Lorain Ave., 216-716-4500), Clevelanders will have one of their first opportunities to try them locally. (Down in Akron, Everest Restaurant and Nepali Kitchen both offer momo as well as other Nepali foods.) Himalayan took over the spot left vacant more than a year ago when the popular Cuisine Du Cambodge abruptly closed up shop. A fresh makeover has left the space looking better than it ever has.
Himalayan offers three different versions of momo: vegetable, ground chicken, and ground goat. The steamed half-moon-shaped dumplings are served with a spicy chutney and a soup-like sauce.
Other Nepali specialties on offer include sekuwa, grilled meat skewers threaded with goat, pork or buffalo meat, and sukuti, stews made using dried meats such as goat and buffalo. Nepali-style curries and biryanis join Nepali-style chow mein dishes. The remainder of the lengthy menu is devoted to more familiar sounding Indian dishes that run the gamut from crispy samosas and pakoras to spicy vindaloos. There’s a wide range of vegetarian dishes as well.
During lunch, the restaurant puts out an expansive buffet. Try to avoid the restaurant during the post-buffet, pre-dinner hours of 3 to 5 p.m. when the kitchen operates on a limited menu.