Afghan Meal: Mantu

Hey Everyone! So as promised, here’s the recipe for Mantu, I hope you like it!

Now I know the name sounds a little funny, it’s pronounced maan-too; it’s funny how the word “man” is in it, but it takes a woman to cook it.

Okay, so mantu is like a dumpling, but in order to “Afghanify” it, we fill them up with meat and onions, then top it off with minced meat and mixed veggies. Let’s get started!

Ingredients: Dumpling wrapper(found in Asian markets), red onions, minced meat, frozen mixed vegetables, Afghan homemade yogurt, cilantro, olive oil, tomato paste, dried cilantro coriander seeds, turmeric powder, salt, black pepper, and garlic.

1) Cook about 2 lbs. of minced meat with half ounce olive oil, stirring it for about 5 mins.

2)Chop about 10 medium sized red onions in a food processor

3) Mix the meat and onions together. Add 1 tsp. salt, dash of black pepper, and crushed dried cilantro coriander seeds.

4) Before you start filling the dumplings, grab a bowl of water, lightly dab your fingertips in the water and take a piece of the dumpling wrapper, wet the outer corners and then place about 1 tsp of the mix in the middle. Fold it so it looks crescent shaped, then take the two corners and press them together.


5) Spray the top and middle “mini pots” with olive oil and then place the mantus in each. Fill the bottom pot halfway with water and allow it to boil for 15 mins. *This pot can be found in Afghan or Asian Supermarkets :)

6) Then, switch the top two trays and allow it to boil for another 15 mins. When you take them out, it should look like this:

7) While you’re waiting, you can prepare the sauce to put over the mantus:

In a separate pot, pour one ounce of olive oil and mix it with three large chopped up red onions. When the onions turn a yellowish color, add a small can of Hunt’s tomato paste, one clove of chopped garlic, one tsp. of salt, half tsp. of black pepper, dash of tumeric powder, and crushed dried cilantro coriander seeds. Stir for 1-2 mins.

Next, add minced meat and stir for about 5 minutes. Add about 16 oz. of water and leave it to cook in high heat for about 20 mins.

Lastly, add about 1 full cup of frozen mixed vegetables. Leave it for about 15 mins, and then it’s ready to serve.

Pour this on top of the mantus and also have it as a separate dish.

Once I placed the mantus, I poured homemade Afghan yogurt on top, the special sauce (veggies w/ meat), and sprinkled a few cilantro leaves here and there.

*Also note, mantus are usually made with the square dumpling wrapper, they only had the round ones at the store so I worked with what I had. Using the square shaped wrappers and folding them was like doing origami, these round ones were faster, easier, and I think they looked cute :)

Bon appetit or as the Afghans say, Noosheh Jaan!


Peace & love,



2 thoughts on “Afghan Meal: Mantu

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