Manti: Turkish Gyoza
This recipe concludes my series of posts about roast lamb and its leftovers in many guises. It is a stretch to think of this as a Japanese recipe, and I don’t intend it to be. I suppose it is a sort of exploration of various kinds of pasta (wheat dough or pasta) enclosing foods which may or not be related to gyoza—a category not specific relationships or history. No mind. This post is more a process rather than a recipe of a fabulous example of dough enclosed food.

The wrapper dough:

  • 1 egg
  • ¼ cup water (or less)
  • 1 cup flour
  • ½ tsp salt

Put the flour into a food processor with the dough blade. Add a pinch of salt and give it a whirl. Break the egg and pulse until it looks like coarse cornmeal. Squeeze a small handful: if it forms a glob of dough, you are done. If it doesn’t hold together, then add a few drops of water. Pulse and test again. Repeat as necessary.
Roll dough thin: with a pasta machine go to the thinnest setting. Cut the sheets into 3″ squares.
The filling:

  • about 2 cups leftover leg of lamb or ½ pound raw ground lamb
  • ½ cup chicken broth
  • ½ a white onion, diced
  • ¼ cup fresh mint, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp hot paprika
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced or grated

If you are using leftover roast leg of lamb, process it in a food processor to a fine mince: raw lamb is good with a bit more texture. Note that you want some fat in this mixture. Don’t be afraid: it carries the flavor and makes the texture juicy. Unfortunately, most lamb I can buy here is trimmed of most of the fat, so I added some chicken broth to moisten. Combine meat, onion, mint, pepper, cinnamon, paprika, and garlic.
The yogurt sauce:

  • 1 cup thick Greek style (Fage) yogurt or labneh
  • ¼ cup fresh mint leaves
  • pinch of salt

Combine and refrigerate for at least an hour for the mint flavor to permeate the yogurt.
Optional dressing:

  • about 1 cup

I use some of the sauce leftover from roasting the lamb . But if I make these with raw lamb, then I make a sauce with chicken broth flavored with garlic, cinnamon, hot pepper: sorry no recipe—just aim for something a little spicy, with umami, and thickened only a little; thinner than gravy, thicker than soup. Or use butter or olive oil to keep the dumplings from sticking together.
Assembling the dumplings:
Pictures will show you better than I can describe:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a vigorous boil. Add the dumplings, and cook until the dumplings float to the top and pasta is al denté. Test for doneness if you used raw lamb.
Drain. Divide among shallow bowls. Pour the dressing over. Top with a spoonful of yogurt. Enjoy.Alternate cooking methods, which I’ve not tried:
steam the dumplings using a steamer called a “manti qasqon” or “mantishnica” (or a bamboo steamer)
bake with butter and chopped onions until golden, add stock to almost cover and bake until most of it is absorbed


19 thoughts on “Manti: Turkish Gyoza

  1. Oh, Tess… such a great recipe! You know, I’ve had a recipe for manti in my computer since David Rosengarten made it in his glorious days at FoodTV Network, a show called Taste.

    I am definitely going to make it soon!

    thanks, wonderful post!

    • Sally,

      Well! I’d say get to making your recipe as soon as you can!
      Not lo cal, but big yum I think!

      This recipe is my own way of using leftover lamb roast. (they are not as large as turkeys, but if there are only the two of us, it’s a lot of food.) It should be made with fresh lamb! Even so: it is good.

      But I’ve accurately made all sorts of these “dumplings” from countries in Central Asia, and parts of the former Soviet Union. Don’t know how ‘authentic’ any one recipe was,

      but, you are adventurous: it would be a tasty choice.

      Have fun!!

    • Thanks! This seemed a better way to show something step-by-step than a video because readers can pause the pictures when they like. And the images are much clearer than they would be with a video.

      Have you tried it yet?

      It’s a bit clunky and there is no way to modify it—it comes in 1 size only. Pictures must be the maximum size for your theme because if they are smaller the slideshow is a large black square with small pics in it: not looking much like a frame. More a “black hole.” And using portrait and landscape images in one slideshow is a mess.

      • I’ve tried using it, but it doesn’t always seem to work in the theme I’m using. The last image of the slideshow somehow gets stuck at the top of the page and remains static. This problem seemed to fix itself when I contacted support about it and made a sample slideshow in a draft post for them to inspect, although I’m experiencing this same problem again with a post that I planned on posting today. I don’t know if it there will be a difference once it’s published or not.

        • That’s odd. Just switched my test blog to grid focus and tried a new slideshow there. The first couple of times the slideshow (only 3 photos) played there was a slight pause after the last photo, but then no problem. Both draft and published.

          You can publish privately if you don’t want to go live. Maybe they just fixed it? don’t know…

          • I just published my post and the slideshow only has 2 images (both landscape). It seems kind of faulty: it alternately plays through correctly or that glitch happens that I described in my last comment. Maybe there are still a few bugs in the feature that have to be sorted out that have nothing to do with the Grid Focus theme itself.

            On another note, your gyoza (specifically your step-by-step tutorial) reminds me of these Japanese beef curry buns I used to make, but I baked them instead of deep-frying. I also tried making them gluten-free.


            • I’m not getting any glitches in Safari. It does take a long time to load though.
              The slideshow loads fast in Firefox, but the other images are slow.
              Are your photos compressed for the web?

              Oh, yes her site is great. I have not tried the curry buns yet. Seems when I make curry there is none left over.

              • I’m using Firefox, maybe that’s why – Firefox has had several updates within the span of a very short time. I don’t think the photos are compressed (as in a zip file?), but the issue seems to have resolved itself now.

                Also from her site, I adapted the castella recipe to make it gluten-free. Really good! I’ll have to make that and those curry buns again soon.

                • No, not zip files. I use Photoshop which has a compression program built in. Elements has that software as well, and there are (free sometimes) online programs which can compress images as well. Ask in the forum: someone else can tell you about them because I don’t know.

                  The software compresses your image files so you don’t loose quality: good for faster downloading and you can have so many thousands of pictures on your blog…

                  Yum. That cake looks really good—interesting that it came to Japan by way of Portugal (I think?). I’m not much of a baker but it looks like a cake I would like: not too sweet?

  2. Fascinating recipe and I love the drama of actually seeing the folding techniques! I wonder if I could master the figure of eight? Do you think the pot sticker treatment would work here too? Half pan fried – half steamed?

    • I think the egg pasta dough would be too tender to be treated as potstickers. But the filling, why could you not put that into gyoza wrappers?

      Of course, the attraction of this recipe is that it is soft, tender, and not crunchy. It is not quite as soft as Polish pierogi. There are Finnish and Russian variations of pierogi, often with a potato dough or filling.

      These dough-wrapped dumpling-like foods have a variety of shapes. The 8s are hard to explain. Well, hard to photograph too.

      As you read above, the slideshow is a new feature of blogging. Great that you thought it dramatic!

  3. Hard to explain but terribly endearing and calling to me to try them.

    Has Mr Tess ever told you the crepula, ( not sure if that’s the spelling) story?

    I have had some very tasty pierogi too in my time made by Polish friends who really know how to rattle the pots and pans. But we are having kimchi dumplings today – bought from the Korean supermarket and not, I’m ashamed to say, made by me. I’m once again inspired by your knowledge so more dumpling adventures await! Such a neat little parcel of food – as wonderful in their own way as onigiri.

  4. Tess I have followed your link and am humbled by the meaning of kreplach – I think I like the first meaning best don’t you? Actually what I meant by story was a tale told to me by my sweet Dad when I was growing up. It’s always difficult – even as an adult to separate the family lore from the collective. That is, sometimes we are raised with stories that we assume are common to all but turn out to be personal fairytales…

    Anyway this is the story my Dad told me of a child who had an irrational fear of kreplach. Her mother one day decided to ask her small daughter to help her make the kreplach without saying what it was that they were making. First they made the dough and she asked her daughter, “is this not good?” and her daughter bobbed her head and said, “this is good. Next they dusted the board with flour and rolled out the dough – careful to get it even and thin but not so thin that it should break. And the mother asked her daughter, “is this not good?” and the daughter replied, “this is good.” Anyway you get the picture they went on with the placing of the filling, the folding and pinching together of the dough and all was good until the final step when the dumpling was about to be dropped into the soup and the child realised what she had been doing and screamed KREPLACH!

    Now that does not seem an encouragement to try new food I know – perhaps its meaning was more along the lines of all things are greater than the sum of their parts. I don’t know that an explanation was ever offered by my Dad. It was just one in his repertoire of stories….

    I love the story of honey cake too as explained in your link!

    • Carolyn, I must thank you for the story—well, because, I hadn’t thought there was a story until you brought it up.

      Your dad’s story is unusual; you can’t know something by looking at its parts: like the blind men and the elephant where each described the animal depending on where they were standing. But why do you suppose a child would be frightened of kreplach??

      Any way, I love stories about food

  5. Pingback: Kangaroo for dinner « Tess's Japanese Kitchen

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