A taste of friendship
Over the centuries many different peoples settled in Kyrgyzstan. Uzbeks, Dungans, Russians, Tatars and others joined the Kyrgyz and brought their cultures, habits and cooking traditions. Many traditions quickly spread over the country, but some remained characteristic only for certain groups. Thus today in Kyrgyzstan we have a great cultural potpourri. However there is one tradition that all the ethnic groups have in common - for the guest the best is just good enough.
EAt Ecotour we continue this tradition. In our yurts we only serve fresh and ecologically grown food produced in the region. With love and care our cooks prepare national dishes as well as the distinct food of the ethnic groups.
The following recipes are very popular and easy to cook. But they taste the best in our yurts.
Besh-barmak means "five fingers" because nomads used to eat it with their fingers. It is the national Kyrgyz dish. Cut mutton (beef can be substituted) into small pieces and boil to make a broth. Add salt and pepper. Cook noodles in the broth. Put the noodles on a separate plate, than add onion rings to the broth and boil till they are soft. Serve noodles, meat and onion rings on a plate and the remaining broth separately in a cup.
Plov is the Uzbek national dish. At festivities this popular rice meal is prepared by men. Fry in a wok 300 gr. to 500 gr. minced mutton or beef with some salt and pepper. Add one or two sliced onions and 1 kg of carrots cut into thick matchsticks. A spoonful of spicy ketchup may be added at this stage to make the plov spicy. Fry for another five minutes. Pour 1 lt. of water into the pan and simmer for 15 - 20 minutes. Spread 1 kg. of rice over the meat (the water in the pot should cover the top of the rice) and cook for another 20 minutes or until all the water has been absorbed by the rice.
Oromo is Kyrgyz and means "filled bag". The filling is the point: a pound of mutton or beef, a pound of onions and the same amount of carrots. All cut into very small pieces. Mince the meat and the vegetables and mix them with margarine and spices. Roll out a thin dough of flour, a little oil, salt and some milk, spread the filling on it. Make a roll and steam the wrapped filling for some 45 minutes. Cut into 6 or 8 pieces.
Lagman is the spaghetti bolognese of the Dungans. Boil noodles in salted water. After rinsing drip some oil on the noodles. Fry minced beef or mutton. Add an onion cut into small pieces with some ketchup and fry for another 10 minutes. Cut 2 pieces of radish, 2 carrots and 4 paprika and fry hot. Pour a cup of water into the pan and braise the meat and the vegetables for 15 minutes. Lagman is only complete when dshusay is sprinkled over it. That is a mixture of minced garlic, parsley, celeriac and basil.
Katyrak borsok Kyrgyz bread and very sweet. Knead a dough of 1kg flour, 3 eggs, 80 ml of milk, a little sodium, a pinch of salt and a few drops of oil. Roll thin stripes 4 cm wide and 6 cm long and fry these in hot oil. The trick is to form spirals with a wooden stick while frying the sweet. Powder with icing sugar.