Double Trouble Dumplings with Tomato Passata – Dani Valent

A family meal that's on the table in 45 minutes and stars two types of fab dumplings

This is a one-pot family meal with flair. Two types of dumplings and a healthy pile of greens cook over their own sauce to create a delicious family dinner that ticks the boxes. It’s flexible, easy and quick and we don’t wash the bowl at all, even though we step through a few different elements. Love that!

The cheese dumplings are made with quark, a firm European fresh cheese, similar to cottage cheese. You can substitute firm ricotta or a sturdy cottage cheese. Of course, you may choose to make just one type of dumpling or the other and that’s fine too.

This recipe feeds a crowd but you can refrigerate or freeze any uncooked dumplings to have on-hand for future meals.

Feeds: 8-10 
Time: 45 minutes


Quark Dumplings

  • 60 grams (2.2 oz) grana padano or parmesan cheese, in 2 cm (1 in) cubes, plus extra to serve
  • handful parsley, plus extra to serve
  • 1 lemon, zest peeled in strips, plus extra to serve
  • 500 grams (19 oz) quark
  • 2 eggs
  • pinch nutmeg
  • 40 grams (1.5 oz) cornflour
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Meat-and-Veg Dumplings

  • 1 red onion, halved
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 80 grams (3 oz) stale bread, chopped
  • 1 zucchini, roughly chopped
  • 80 grams (3 oz) mushrooms
  • 500 grams (17.6 oz) beef mince
  • 1 egg
  • 30 grams (1 oz) currants
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • pinch chilli flakes or zaatar, optional
  • salt and pepper
  • 100 grams (3.7 oz) mozzarella, cut into 0.5cm cubes
  • 1 litre (35.2 oz) passata (or a mixture of passata and water)
  • 200 grams (7 oz) green beans, or other vegetables of choice


Quark Dumplings

1. Place cheese, parsley and zest in mixing bowl and grate 8 sec/speed 7.

2. Add quark, eggs, nutmeg, cornflour and salt and pepper. Mix 30 sec/speed 4.5, or until mixed. Turn mixture into a bowl, flicking the last bits to the sides of the bowl with a quick 1 sec/Turbo. There’s no need to wash mixing bowl.

Meat-and-Veg Dumplings

3. Place onion and garlic in mixing bowl and chop 1 sec/speed 7.

4. Add bread, zucchini and mushrooms. Chop 8 sec/speed 7. Scrape down.

5. Add beef, egg, currants and spices, including salt and pepper. Break up meat with spatula then mix 1 min/Rev/speed 3.5 or until well mixed. Scrape down, if necessary and mix for a further 5 sec/Rev/speed 3.5. Turn mixture into a bowl. There’s no need to wash mixing bowl.


6. Place passata in mixing bowl and cook 15 min/Varoma/speed 2.

7. While it’s heating, form the double dumplings. Using wet hands, or wearing gloves, form quark mixture into dumplings approximately 30 grams (1 oz) and place in Varoma tray. Form meat mixture into balls approximately 40 grams (1.5 oz), enclosing a cube of mozzarella in each. Place in Varoma dish. You’ll have mixture left over, which can be refrigerated for another time, or cooked in batches (see Tips). Set Varoma in place.

8. When time has elapsed, remove quark dumplings if cooked and springy. Add beans to steamer basket and set in place. Replace Varoma and cook Meat-and-Veg Dumplings and beans 10 min/Varoma/speed 2.

9. Serve double dumplings with a generous pour of passata, and scatter with chopped parsley, grated cheese and extra lemon zest, if desired.


  • If cooking in batches, top mixing bowl up with more water or passata, if necessary.
  • Use a medium sized zucchini

For another interesting use of quark see Cervelle de Canut, a great cheese dip

More about this video

Want more one-pot family meals? How about these:

  • You will not believe how great this Middle Eastern Salmon with Tahini Sauce and Walnut Relish is! It’s quick, easy, impressive and feeds the whole gang. It’s fast enough for a weeknight and impressive enough for the fanciest dinner party. We augment sublime steamed fish with layered flavours and textures, building up excitement and a sense of occasion.
  • Frank Camorra makes his Tortilla  outdoors over open flame. You can do it his way, or go Thermo-style with our fabulous Varoma tortilla. And check out the ‘Varoma flip’.
  • My Hungarian Grandmother’s Goulash is a slow-cooked, succulent stew with central European flavours. It’s hearty and honest, simple and sustaining.
  • How good is Mushroom & Millet Minestrone! A great soup is comforting and nourishing, tasty and satisfying and, for the cook, a never-ending opportunity to be creative. I love boosting bowl value with greens and grains as we do here, with this hearty, healthy minestrone.
  • My Inside-out Chicken Parmigiana is an impressive but easy chicken dish, with classic pub flavours and a little extra pizzazz. It’s easy to prepare ahead, then finish off when guests arrive or the family is clamouring.
  • There are so many things to love about my Beef Stir-Fry. It’s an all-in-one dinner that feeds a crowd. It’s tasty and adaptable. It’s surprising too, overcoming a phobia of steamed meat in one fell, delicious swoop.

A girl’s gotta get dressed. Today I’m wearing Leonard St.

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