Steamed Manchurian

Something really phenomenal happened in India probably starting 1970s. We developed our very own version of Chinese cuisine. It was not just a local interpretation of a global cuisine but a full fledged cuisine in itself with dishes you don't find anywhere else - the chilly paneer, singapore noodles and vegetable manchurian to name a few. The vegetable manchurian is especially unique and a dish of our very own Indo-chinese cuisine. 

They are typically fried balls of veggies with a soy-based sauce. But we made it a bit different with the steaming process. There were 2 sources of inspiration for this recipe. First is our new Ultimo steamer and second is our dinner time show “Health bhi Taste bhi”


For manchurian balls
1 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp minced ginger
2 carrots finely chopped
1 onion finely chopped
8-10 french beans finely chopped
1/2 cup soaked soya granules
1/2 tsp Cornflour
All purpose flour (if needed for binding)
1 tsp Soy Sauce
1/2 tsp sweet chili sauce
Black Pepper

For coating
½ cup soaked broken rice

For gravy
2 spring onion finely chopped
1 tsp oil
½ tsp minced garlic
½ tsp minced ginger
1 tsp cornflour mixed in cold water
2 tsp Soy sauce
1 tsp sweet chilli sauce
Salt and white pepper to taste


For manchurian balls
1. Mix all the ingredients required for Manchurian balls and make a paste. Roll them into small balls of 1 inch each. You may need to add some flour in case the binding does not happen

2. Grind soaked rice into coarse paste.

3. Coat Manchurian balls with soaked rice so they evenly coat the outer layer. This will help to keep the balls together as we steam them

4. Prepare steamer assembly on gas.

5. Steam Manchurian balls for 12-15 mins. Be careful to not overcook the balls since they will harden once cooked. Try at 12 minutes and extend only if needed

For gravy

1. This is a simple soy based gravy so should be real quick. Start with sauteing the onions (the white portion), ginger and garlic.

2. Make the gravy mixture with 1 cup water, cornflour, both sauces, salt and pepper.

3. Add to the onion mix and cook on slow heat till the gravy thickens. Alternatively, you can increase the quantity of water and make a thinner gravy

And its done. Serve the steamed manchurian balls with fried rice or eat as a starter with a thick sauce/dip.


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This blog is from the kitchen of Neha Gupta and Mridul Karkara. We go about our days pretending to be HR Managers and Business Consultants respectively, though in reality, just thinking about our next big meal! This food blog is a representation of our experiments in the kitchen and for the simple joy of cooking and sharing!

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