MoMo’s Nepalese Food, Springfield

I had several things here the other evening, among them Lamb Choila ($7.99) which was one of the oddest plates of food I’ve had in awhile. It’s possible they’d forgotten this dish, and rushed to prepare it, but what I got was a trilogy of lamb cubes, seemingly roasted, then perhaps warmed via wok, and coated in a turmeric-y curry paste. That was the normal part.

But the two items on the side were Funkville: dry rice, and marinated soybean seed.

I’ve had a variation of the dry rice at Himalayan Heritage, but this was perhaps even more extreme. Essentially, it was a pile of paper, each piece about the size of a squashed-flat rice kernel. The appearance, texture, and flavor all were that of … paper. If someone had handed me this, and told me to eat it, then told me I had just eaten paper, I would believe them if I didn’t know what it was. What is the function of this dry rice?

“Watch out for the texture,” my server told me about the marinated soybean seed. This looked like a marinated couscous salad, except that the “couscous” had a texture somewhere in between unpopped kernels of popcorn and black watermelon seeds. The flavor was perfectly fine, but these were *so* resilient that if you had a loose filling, it would be possible to lose while using your molars (the only teeth you could possibly use to chew this). I think I could get used to these soybean seeds because the flavor was really very nice, but it might take a bit of time.

Do we have any resident Nepalese experts who can answer a simple, one-word question: Why?

The menu at Momo’s skews strongly towards Indian over Nepalese, but the Nepalese undercurrent is a strong one. A word of warning: Don’t come in here looking for beef. :)

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