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Uzbek Cuisine

Uzbek cuisine recipes

Uzbek Cuisine and Its National Dishes

Uzbek cuisine is distinguished by its rich history and original recipes of national dishes. Due to close contact with neighboring cultures, Uzbeks borrowed many recipes from them, but all the recipes of Uzbek cuisine are much different from the prototypes in their cooking style. In addition, there are many original recipes for Uzbek dishes that are unique to the Uzbek national cuisine. Recipes of Uzbek dishes do not leave indifferent anyone who has tried them at least once.

Features of Uzbek Cuisine

Uzbek cuisine was formed under the influence of cultures and national cuisines of the surrounding Uzbek peoples. Asian cuisine had a great influence on the recipes of Uzbek dishes, while many Asian dishes - pilaf, lagman, manti and others - were significantly transformed and acquired a native Uzbek character. Uzbek cuisine has learned a lot from the national cuisines of the neighboring nomadic peoples, it has also been influenced by European culture and cuisine. Thanks to a combination of these factors, Uzbek cuisine has acquired its own unique flavor. Uzbek cuisine is in many ways close to Tajik, but differs significantly from the national cuisines of Turkmens and Kazakhs. Uzbek cuisine differs both in specific sets of products in recipes, and in peculiar ways of processing and cooking food.

Features of Cooking Uzbek Dishes

One of the main ways of preparing Uzbek dishes is frying in fat. For this, a cauldron and a mixture of animal and vegetable fats are usually used; cottonseed oil is often used in the preparation of Uzbek cuisine recipes. A feature of frying in Uzbek cuisine is the preliminary heating of fat before cooking the dishes themselves. Another traditional way of preparing Uzbek dishes is steaming. Baking in Uzbek cuisine is prepared in a tandir - a clay oven of a peculiar design. Uzbek cuisine is characterized by the use of spices - zira (cumin) and cumin, basil (rayhona) and coriander, sesame and dill, barberry and many others, while Uzbek dishes are usually not made spicy. Another feature of the preparation of Uzbek dishes is the use of a large amount of onions, and several times more onions are put in Uzbek dishes than, for example, in European dishes. So, in minced meat for Uzbek dumplings (chuchvara), onions are put 2-3 times more than meat.

Meat in Uzbek Cuisine

The use of a large amount of meat in recipes is one of the main features of Uzbek cuisine. Since the majority of Uzbeks profess Islam, this imposes certain restrictions and rules on the use of certain foods and dishes, including meat. Pork and pork recipes are completely absent in Uzbek cuisine, while lamb, beef and horse meat are widely used. Poultry meat is practically not used in Uzbek cuisine.

Dishes of Uzbek Cuisine

There are many original and interesting recipes in Uzbek cuisine. As already mentioned, meat is used in Uzbek cuisine for cooking main dishes, and in large quantities. In addition to meat, legumes and grains are widely used in the recipes of Uzbek dishes. Vegetables are used in the recipes of many Uzbek dishes, but mostly as an addition to meat, and not on their own. Uzbek cuisine has a lot of different and very tasty pastries.

Uzbek Pilaf

Pilaf is the most famous and famous dish of Uzbek cuisine. The Uzbek pilaf recipe is somewhat different from the pilaf recipes of other nationalities and has deep Uzbek roots. The basic recipe for Uzbek pilaf consists of meat, rice, onions, and carrots; raisins, quince, apples, apricots, barberries, and many spices are involved in more complex pilaf preparations. In general, there are more than a thousand recipes for Uzbek pilaf, depending on the place of preparation, the time of year, the occasion for which Uzbek pilaf is prepared, and much more. Ferghana pilaf is known, as well as Samarkand, Bukhara and Khorezm pilaf.

The recipe for pilaf may vary depending on the occasion or season - simple, festive and wedding, as well as winter or summer pilaf. Pilaf may differ in the type of meat used in its recipe, and lamb is not always used in Uzbek pilaf, it is often replaced with kazy horse sausage, fat tail casing or poultry meat. Moreover, even rice is not always an obligatory component of Uzbek pilaf - mung bean, wheat or peas can be used along with it or even instead of it.

Uzbek pilaf is prepared in everyday life and at any mass events, such as weddings, commemorations, and so on. According to tradition, at major events, Uzbek pilaf is cooked in large cauldrons, sometimes containing more than one hundred liters. The preparation of pilaf under these conditions is carried out by a specialist - "oshpaz", or a man - a professional chef. The art of cooking pilaf is highly valued in Uzbek cuisine, and oshpaz is a highly respected person. Usually in such cases, a recipe for a festive pilaf is used - with the addition of spices and other ingredients.

Traditional Uzbek Dishes

Traditional Uzbek dishes include shurpa - hot soup with meat, the term shurpa is also used simply to name any soup. In Uzbek cuisine, it is traditional to cook steamed dishes, in this way manti and chuchvara are prepared - Uzbek dumplings. One of the traditional dishes of Uzbek cuisine is sumalak, a ritual dish made from sprouted wheat. It is customary to cook Sumalak for Navruz Bayram.

Drinks in Uzbek Cuisine

Due to belonging to Islam, Uzbek cuisine does not imply the presence of alcoholic beverages. But in the Uzbek cuisine, sour-milk drinks are widely represented - katyk, ayran and others, as well as, of course, tea - a traditional Asian drink. Traditionally, strong and fragrant green tea without milk and sugar is used in Uzbek cuisine, but there are also recipes for Uzbek tea with pepper, milk and honey, then the drink is prepared on the basis of black tea. The use of tea is traditional; in a tea house, conversations or business negotiations can be held over a cup of tea, just communication and solving serious issues. Uzbek tea is served with any meal; its preparation is a kind of art.

Uzbek Cuisine Recipes

Recipes of Uzbek dishes are imbued with national flavor, known and revered far beyond the borders of Uzbekistan. Lucky for those who could try Uzbek pilaf or flatbread directly in Uzbekistan, but do not despair. If you use simple recipes for homemade dishes of Uzbek cuisine, it is quite possible to cook many Uzbek dishes at home.