Uyghur Taam Tori

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Laghman (English)

This is an Uyghur dish. Uyghurs come from what is now northwest China but their language and culture are more akin to those of people from Central Asian countries such as Kyrghyzstan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Tadjikistan. Like the people of those countries, Uyghurs are predominantly muslims. Due to the close historical links between Uyghurs and their Central Asian neighbours and, more recently, to oppression by the Chinese authorities, Uyghurs and, consequently, Uyghur cuisine can be found all over Central Asia.
As laghman is traditionally made with mutton, I had never tried it until a couple of years ago when I travelled through Xinjian provence, the heart of the Uyghur homeland, and had big problems finding vegetarian food. Most of the time I ate bread, pickles and dried fruit. Sometimes I ate Chinese food – usually tofu. One time I was in a small roadside village which was a service centre for lorry drivers and bus passengers. I was really hungry and I walked into the only restaurant and sat down. There was no menu but the waitress came up and put a bowl of tea and a bowl of laghman in front of me, then brought a pair of chopsticks. She went away without a word. I picked the bits of mutton out and ate the laghman. What a pity, I thought, that this always contains meat. There were so many vegetables and spices in it that the meat didn’t seem necessary. I resolved to try a vegetarian version but it was only two years later, when my wife said she fancied laghman for dinner, that I got round to it.
I used soy protein for this recipe but you needn’t. We just happened to have a little left in the bottom of a packet in the cupboard, so I chucked it in. I don’t see soy protein as a ‘meat substitute’. I don’t think such things are necessary, it doesn’t taste anything like meat and I don’t see the point in trying to make it taste like meat. If you make laghman without soy protein, it won’t be any the worse for that.
The noodles traditionally used are thick, hand rolled wheat noodles. You can use any kind I suppose but ordinary Italian style spaghetti works fine. The thicker stuff with the hole running through it is even better if you can find it.
A handful of dried soy protein
1 large potato
1 large carrot
2 green peppers
1 large tomato
1 onion
2 or 3 cloves of garlic
1 level tsp. whole coriander seeds
A few black peppercorns
A third of a tsp. crushed dried red chillies
1 star anise
Either a level tsp. of vegetable stock powder, half a vegetable stock cube or a half teaspoon of yeast extract
3 tablespoons of soy sauce
Vegetable oil
Green coriander

A lot of ingredients but the preparation is fairly simple. You’ll be eating it within an hour of washing the carrots and potatoes.
Start by soaking the soy protein in hot water then peel the carrots and potatoes and chop them up along with the tomato and peppers. Put everything to one side while you peel and chop the onion. Put some oil in a pan (go on, stick a load in) and while it is heating, crush the coriander seeds and peppercorns. Throw them into the hot oil and add the chopped onion a few seconds later. When the onion is starting to brown, crush the garlic and add it with the chilli and whole anise. Stir and fry for a few minutes more then add all the other vegetables. Drain the soy protein, give it a quick rinse in cold water and fire that in too. Stir and put a lid on the pan. Stew the mixture for 5 to 8 minutes then add water to cover everything and more. There should be a lot of liquid in the final sauce – almost like a soup. Add the soy sauce and stock and a little salt if you think it’s necessary, but remember there’s salt in the soy sauce and stock.
Simmer the sauce for about half an hour then add chopped coriander at the end of the cooking time. If you’re planning to serve it straight away, start cooking the pasta about 10 minutes before the sauce is ready, then you can turn the heat off and leave the sauce to cool a little before the pasta finishes cooking. Serve the laghman in deep bowls, half filled with pasta then topped up with sauce.

يانۋار 25, 2010 Posted by | Uyghur Food (English) | باھا يېزىش

Recipe: Uighur Lamb Kebabs

Serves 4 to 6 as a main course
1 pound boneless lamb leg or shoulder

1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/4 cup pomegranate juice, or substitute 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice mixed with 1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground
black pepper
1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
3/4 teaspoon cayenne
1. Cut the lamb into small pieces, approximately 1-inch square, leaving on a little fat. Set aside.
2. Process the onion to a paste in a food processor. Transfer to amedium bowl and stir in the remaining marinade ingredients. Add lambpieces and stir to coat. Cover and let sit for 2 hours in therefrigerator.
3. Prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill or preheat a gasgrill. If using bamboo skewers, soak 8 skewers in water for 30 minutes.
4. Thread the pieces of meat onto 8 bamboo or metal skewers. Don’tcrowd them: the pieces of meat should barely touch one another.
5. Place the skewers on the hot grill, about 4 to 5 inches from thecoals. Grill for 2 minutes on the first side, then turn. Cook for 7 to8 minutes more, turning periodically to ensure good color and evencooking. Cooking times will vary somewhat depending on whether you usebamboo or metal skewers and on the heat of your grill, and whether youwish to leave the lamb pink in the middle or to cook it right through.
6. Serve on the skewers, on a platter.
From “Beyond the Great Wall: Recipes and Travels in the Other China”
by Jeffrey Alford and Naomi Duguid

يانۋار 25, 2010 Posted by | Uyghur Food (English) | باھا يېزىش

Spiced Cold Beef

”This delicious cold spiced beef was are-creation of an old memory that haunted my family periodically“ afterthe restaurant where they had eaten it closed, writes Mai Leung in herbook ”Dim Sum and Other Chinese Street Food.“ I haven’t tried this butam posting it because I know other members, or perhaps other peoplesurfing the Web, are interested in Muslim style Chinese recipes. ManyChinese people use pork to flavor dishes, by Muslims cannot eat porkfor religious reasons, so Chinese Muslim food focuses on beef and lamb.She suggests serving with Chinese egg noodles that have been cooked,cooled, and tossed lightly with oil to prevent sticking. These aresupposed to be appetizer servings.


  • 1 cup oil
  • 1/4 cup raw peanuts, skins removed
  • 4 ounces ground beef
  • 2 tablespoons szechwan bean sauce (regular, not hot)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground szechwan pepper
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 3 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons black soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 8 bay leaves
  • 1 1/2 lbs flank steaks or tender beef
  • 1 cup celery, in thin strips 1 . 5 inches long
  • 1/2 cup scallion, in thin strips 1 . 5 inches long
  • 1/4 cup red bell pepper, in strips
  • 1/2 cup watercress    
  • Directions

  • 1

    Heat 1 cup oil in wok to deep-fry temperature, then deep-dry peanuts over medium-low heat until golden brown.

  • 2

    Remove the peanuts with a slotted spoon or strainer and place on paper towels to drain and cool.

  • 3

    Put the cooled peanuts in a smallplastic bag or between two towels, then roll a rolling pin over them tocrush coarsely; set crushed peanuts aside for later use.

  • 4

    Mix the cayenne, Szechwan peppercorn, sugar, garlic, vinegar, black soy sauce, and sesame oil in a bowl.

  • 5

    Remove all but two tablespoons of oil from the wok. Heat this oil, and when it is hot, add the ground beef.

  • 6

    Stir and cook the beef until done.

  • 7

    Stir in the bean sauce, then the sauce mixture you have just made.

  • 8

    Mix well, then turn off the heat.

  • 9

    This meat sauce can be prepared a few hours in advance.

  • 10

    Fill a big pot with enough water to cover your piece of beef.

  • 11

    Add the bay leaves to the water and bring to a rapid boil.

  • 12

    Add meat and cook over medium heat until done to your taste – medium rare should be about 10 minutes.

  • 13

    Remove meat and pat dry.

  • 14

    Place the meat on a cutting board and slice into thin pieces, as you would for roast beef.

  • 15

    Arrange the slices on a serving platter, slightly overlapping each other.

  • 16

    Garnish with celery, scallions, red pepper, and watercress.

  • 17

    Pour the meat sauce over evenly, then sprinkle crushed peanuts on top.

  • 18

    Serve at room temperature, perhaps with noodles.

يانۋار 25, 2010 Posted by | Uyghur Food (English) | باھا يېزىش

Uyghur Ice Cream 维吾尔冰淇淋

Xinjiang’s Best Food: Uyghur Ice Cream 维吾尔冰淇淋

Local Name:  ”Maruxna“ (pronounced ma-rue-sh-na)
Chinese Name: 维吾尔冰淇淋 (wéiwúĕr bīngqílín)
Alternate Names: Uyghur Ice Cream

Description: ”Homestyle“ churned ice cream served in a small cup or cone.

Xinjiang’s Ice Cream Man (or Woman)

A small motor was quietlywhirring on top of this small push cart as I approached it.  The motorwas spinning a deep tub of ice cream ingredients while the woman on theother side used a long wooden spoon to gently scrape the sides.  Thecart, set on four wheels, is essentially Xinjiang’s version of the IceCream Man.  They may not make their way through the city neighborhoodsbeckoning children with the sound of ”The Entertainer“, but they havetheir own unique style.
Within the Uyghur markets (like the Urumqi International Bazaar)and along streets lined with Uyghur restaurants you’ll find numerouscarts or stands with a large pile of recently made ice cream ready toscoop into a small cup.  These vendors usually set up their  carts inthe desired location, open a large umbrella to keep the area cool, andstay put for an entire day.

This Ain’t Bluebell

Ihave to be honest and say that the first time I ate Uyghur ice cream Ididn’t like it very much.  When I hear the word ”ice cream“ I usuallybegin daydreaming about a large gallon of Bluebell or a small pint ofBen and Jerry’s (I’ve been in China too long!) but this stuff is awhole different genre of frozen desert.  Uyghur ice cream has a verymilky flavor and is usually grainy in texture.

The ice cream can be made indifferent flavors, but all share the same tint of yellow.  Some aremilk flavored while others are flavored to a specific fruit, but you’llhave to ask to know for sure.  I once heard rumors that they use goatand camel milk as the main ingredient but all the Uyghurs I have talkedto laugh at this idea.

To Eat or Not to Eat?

There’s no doubt that if you come toXinjiang during the summer you’ve got to at least give this ice cream atry.  There’s a chance you won’t like it and you can always stop by thelocal store for regular ice-cream-on-a-stick, but it’s another greatexample of interesting foods, foods like incredibly tasty Xinjiang bread or the Big Plate Chicken, that you’ll only be able to (easily) find in this part of China.


Still not convinced?  A single cup,like you see in the picture above, is only 2-3 RMB (about 25 cents). There’s really no excuse.

يانۋار 13, 2010 Posted by | Uyghur Food (English) | باھا يېزىش

Xinjiang-Style Cuisine

Xinjiang-Style Cuisine
article selected from Travel China weekly

Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region is inhabited by many ethnic groups,and Xinjiang-style food is characterized by roast mutton, kebabs, roastfish and rice to be eaten with the hand.Urumqi China Travel: Urumqi travel information, Urumqi map, weather in Urumqi, Urumqi attractions for travellers to plan a trip to Urumqi.
Urumqi Map to learn the location of Urumqi on the big map
Xinjiang Tours: Private tours to Xinjiang delights: Urumqi, Silk Road…

Roast MeatXinjiang roast mutton is as famous as roast duck is in Beijing andcrispy suckling pig is in Guangzhou. A two-year-old sheep isslaughtered and skinned, daubed with salt inside and outside, and thencoated with a mixture of eggs, chopped ginger and scallions, andpepper. The sheep is put into a stove to roast for about an hour untilit turns golden brown.
Xinjiang kebabs are a snack which is popular nationwide in China,Kebabs can be found in the streets and bazaars throughout Xinjiang.Chunks of mutton are strung on a skewer and roasted over charcoal. Thekebabs are turned continually, and when they are almost done, salt,pepper and other seasonings are sprinkled on them. Kebabs are crispyoutside and tender inside, slightly salty and hot. They are not greasyand have no unpleasant smell.
Meat is also roasted in an oven pit 120-150 degrees Centigrade. Cubesof mutton coated with a mixture of eggs, ginger, pepper, salt and flourare placed in the pit, and the firewood is removed. The mutton is leftfor 30 minutes.
Stewed Mutton Cubes
This is a Xinjiang dish prepared especially for festivals. Cut muttoninto cubes of 500 grams apiece and boil them in a big pot. When theyare half done, remove the foam; and when they are 80 percent done, assonions, pepper, ginger slices, carrots, turnips and tomatoes. Thenremove and place on a big plate. Put some salt in the stock and removeto a bowl. Before eating the mutton, dip it in the stock.
Roast Dumplings
First chop the mutton, beef and sheep’s-tail fat into small cubes. Addchopped onions, salt and pepper to make the stuffing. Wrap the stuffingin dough, and put in an oven to roast for 20 minutes. The dumplings arethin-skinned, with tender meat stuffing and very delicious. The Uygursoften eat these together with nang (crusty pancakes) and rice to beeaten with the hands.
Rice Eaten with the Hands
The materials are fresh mutton, carrots, onions, vegetable oil, meltedsheep’s fat and rice. There are more than 10 kinds of this rice dish,mainly mutton, chicken and vegetarian, but the most common is the oneusing mutton. This food is soft, delicious and nutritious. It is afeature of festivals, funerals and weddings.
Pulled noodles are liked very much by people of various ethnic groups.To go with the noodles, deep-fried mutton, stir-fried eggs andtomatoes, and stir-fried chillies and mutton are prepared. The noodlesare pliable and tough, smooth and delicious. Another method is to cutthe noodles into four-cm sections after boiling, and then stir frytogether with fat, mutton, tomatoes and chillies. The taste is totallydifferent from that of boiled noodles.
Oily Pyramids
This food is a favorite of the Uygurs. First, add lukewarm water toflour to make dough, and mix in a little yeast. After one hour, addsome water, knead the dough and let it stand for a while. Then dividethe dough into several pieces, daub some vegetable oil on the outside,and roll it out piece by piece. Then daub some sheep’s tail fat andsprinkle a little salt and pepper on it, and roll the dough. Cut itinto sections, and twist the sections into pyramid shapes. Steam thepyramids are eaten together with soup or noodles in soup.
Nang (Pancake)
Nang is a staple food for the Uygurs, just like steamed buns innorthern China, rice in southern China and bread in Western counties.Making a nang is similar to making a pancake. The materials includewheat flour, corn flour or sorghum flour, with such seasoning as sesameseeds, onions, eggs, vegetable oil, butter, milk, salt and sugar. Witha golden yellow surface, nang are crispy and delicious.
Sanzi (Deep-Fried Dough Twists)
Sanziis one of traditional snacks of the Moslems. To make sanzi, use wheatflour mixed with vegetable oil and juice of the Chinese prickly ash.Knead the dough repeatedly, and then divide it into several pieces.Pull the dough into thin noodles and deep-fry in oil until goldenyellow. During festivals, every Uygur family makes sanzi to treatguests.
Ququ (Boiled Dumplings)
Ququ is similar to huntun, but is unique in materials. First, chop upthe mutton. Then mix onion, salt, pepper and a little stock to make thestuffing. Wrap the stuffing in dough wrappers in the shape of squares.After boiling, add some coriander. Ququ have thin skins and tenderstuffing. They are delicious and nutritious.
Roast Fish
Remove the internal organs and cut the fish into two halves. Useseveral wooden skewers to penetrate the fish horizonatally, and thenuse a wooden skewer slightly longer than the fish to penetrate the fishvertically. Roast the fish in a semi-circle over firewood. While theyare roasting, sprinkle them with salty water, pepper, and otherseasonings. When one side is done, turn them around to roast the otherside. Then put the fish on a plate and eat them with the fingers.
Flour-Filled Lungs and Rice-Filled Sausages
These are traditional snacks of the Uygurs, using sheep’s internalorgans as raw materials. Since the materials are uncommon and thecooking is time-consuming, this dish is a rare delicacy.

يانۋار 10, 2010 Posted by | Uyghur Food (English) | باھا يېزىش

Uyghur Food

 Uyghur Food

Uyghur Region is the area that has the highest longevity rate in China.It has 25% of the total of people who live over a hundred yearsin China. In October,1985, the area was listed as The WorldLongevity Area by the International Natural Medical Science Commiteein Tokyo, Japan.

According to researchers, the reasons for the high longevityratein the area are related to the region’s weather, environment, and people’slife habits and physical quality. Yet it is alsodirectly because of their food structures. Uighur food is characterized bymutton, beef, camel, chicken, goose; carrots, tomatoes, onions, peppers,eggplants, celeries etc.; variou dairy foods; and variousfruits.
Thefood this lady is holding in this picture is called Sangza which iscrispyand tasty fried wheat flour dough twists, a holidayspecialty. Thefollowing are some more pictures of Uighur food. Please click on them fora better view. Toget a more detailed introduction to them, please go to Xinjiang-StyleCuisine. Finally to really taste them, please go toUighurRestaurant in Montreal, Canada if you are in Montreal or happen to be visiting there.

Appetizers (Uighurs like to treat guests with tea, nan andsome fruit snacks before the main dishes are ready.)

Nan (Very crispy, tasty, and nutty baked bread using seasame seeds,butter, milk, vegetable oil, salt, and sugar.)

Lamb Kabab (Seasoned with chilipowder, salt, blackpepper, and Zir, akind of special herb which gives a unique taste to Kabab.)

Sumsa (Delicious lamb pies baked using a special brick oven.)

Roasted Whole Lamb (using that special brick oven)

Youtazi (Steamed multilayer bread.)

Guxnan (Pan grilled Lamb pies)

Pamirdin (Baked pies with lamb, carrots, and onion inside.)

Fried Lamb Meat Balls

Xurpa(Lamb soup)

Tohax (Baked bread.)


Kabab and Nan

Kabab and Nan

Lahman(Specially handmade noodlestoped with stir-fried lamb andvegetables)

يانۋار 10, 2010 Posted by | Uyghur Food (English) | باھا يېزىش