I’ve been on one cruise in my life, to the Bahamas for my mom’s 50th birthday celebration, and it was indeed a booze cruise. My grandma announced at some point that “this is my second daiquiri, and I am looped!” And by “some point” I mean in the hour or so between the time we boarded and the time the ship left port.
Sadly, I’ll never take a cruise to Mongolia, as it’s landlocked in Central Asia, so our virtual cruise around the world will have to suffice. With that, we bring you Buuz, a Mongolian meat-filled dumpling typically comprised of ground mutton and very little seasoning. For our Buuz we went with ground beef and a touch of seasonings.
The first step is to make the dough to wrap the dumplings in, which simply involves kneading whole wheat flour with salt and water.
Meanwhile, mix the ground beef with salt, pepper, onion and garlic in the food processor.
These get rolled out and topped with the meat filling–just a dollop is plenty.
The dough was pretty easy to work with, and they folded right up into nice dumpling shapes.
The buuz can be steamed or fried, and we went with steamed, in part because it’s healthier and in part because we know how Kristy feels about deep-frying.
Once they’re done, you’re supposed to fan some air over them to give them a glossy appearance, and we served ours over asparagus.
The dumplings were good, but my initial reaction was that they needed a sauce. Ketchup is the recommended topping, and that’s actually a good match. The filling tastes much like meatloaf, which screams for ketchup in my humble opinion, but it just didn’t feel “Mongolian” to me. Perhaps its the Russian influence.
Everyone liked it, though Miss A took just a nibble at the dough and left it alone for most of dinner. The big hit for her was the asparagus, believe it or not. She ate three big stalks, much to the pleasant surprise of Kristy and I. Finally we got her to open up the dumpling and taste the meat, and taste it she did, sticking the whole thing in her mouth rather than the rabbit-size nibbles she was putting on the dough.
While everyone liked it, nobody loved it and it was a two-spoon meal all around. Miss A was right, the asparagus was better, and while I do enjoy perfectly done asparagus, I can’t give any more than two spoons to something that can’t beat a green vegetable.
Buuz concludes our virtual cruise to Mongolia, and while we didn’t get looped on this cruise, we sure enjoyed our trip.
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