Somewhere between tortellini, meatballs and gyoza, Armenian Manti may just be better than all three put together. We’ve flavoured our beef dumplings with baharat, a warm, aromatic spice mix used extensively throughout middle eastern cooking. One of the beautiful things about these dumplings is the ease in cooking them. A simple tomatoey broth is used to slowly cook and steam the dumplings in the oven, creating a thick sticky sauce and flavouring the dumplings as they cook. A delicious show-stopping recipe.
To make the dough, add the flour and salt into a mixing bowl and make a well in the centre. Add the water and oil into the well and then mix together until a shaggy dough is formed.
Transfer to a lightly floured surface and knead until you achieve a smooth dough. No more than a couple of minutes.
Wrap the dough and leave to rest in the fridge until ready to use.
MAKING THE FILLING
Place a large pan over a medium heat with a splash of olive oil. Once hot, add the diced onion into the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes until the onions are just starting to colour. Then, add the garlic and cook for a further minute. Remove from the heat and set the onions aside to cool down completely.
TIP – Try transferring the cooked onions to a large, cold plate and spread them out as much as possible. This will help the onions to cool down more quickly.
In a large mixing bowl add the beef mince and season with the baharat, sesame seeds, salt and pepper. Try and loosen the mince so that the seasoning is evenly spread over the meat.
Add the cooled onions and parsley to the bowl and thoroughly mix together until evenly combined.
TIP – At this point, you should heat a small pan and fry off a little of the mixture and then taste for seasoning and adjust as necessary.
Refrigerate the filling until needed.
Meanwhile, make the broth by combining the stock, tomato concentrate, urfa chilli flakes and minced garlic in a jug or bowl and mix together until evenly combined. Set aside until needed.
Combine the yoghurt, minced garlic and dried mint and mix together until evenly combined. You can set it aside until needed.
MAKING THE MANTI
Remove the dough from the fridge and allow to rest at room temperature for 15 minutes.
Roll out the dough to a large rectangle, about 2mm thick. Cut the dough into 5cm x 5cm squares.
Add a teaspoon of the filling (about 6g) into the centre of each pastry square and then fold the filled dough into an open boat shape (open at the top with some filling exposed, and then pinch the sides of the dough together). Repeat the process until all the filling is used up.
Finally, lightly oil a large oven-safe dish and arrange the dumplings inside the dish.
COOKING THE MANTI
Preheat the oven to 190ºC (Fan).
Pour half the broth into the pan with the manti in, so that the broth fills the gaps between each dumpling. Cover the pan with a lid or foil and transfer to the oven for 15 minutes.
After 15 minutes remove the lid/foil from the pan and add the remaining broth to the pan. Return to the oven and cook uncovered for a further 15 minutes until the broth has reduced and the dumplings are cooked. Top with half of the Garlic Yoghurt, sesame seeds, chilli oil, dried mint and a few coriander leaves. Serve immediately with the remaining Garlic Yoghurt.