We Didn’t Just Shop, We Also Ate…

The food in Uzbekistan is absolutely divine. Here are some of our favourites (with links to The Art of Uzbek Cuisine if you’d like to try some at home!):

  • Non: Every region had its own special bread – from the raised rim sesame seed topped version in Fergana to the layered pastry version of Samarkand
  • Kefir: a thick drinking yogurt often served with breakfast which we happily dosed with stewed apricots or strawberry jam
  • Suzma: The delicious yogurt dip with fresh herbs helped us polish off a lot of bread when we were too impatient to wait for our main course
  • Samsa: Their samosas made with a variety of fillings. We’re still lusting after the pumpkin samsas at Fergana and promise to not be shy and eat the whole plate the next time we’re there. The mince lamb tandoor version in Bukhara was well worth second and third helpings!
  • Chuchvara: a hot delicate dumpling soup topped with fresh dill (our mood food almost every other day)
  • Manti: Extra large sized stuffed steam dumplings usually with minced meat, topped with fresh herbs. We could eat just ONE!
  • Plov: We weren’t expecting too much about this Uzbekistan national dish, given the fabulous Indian biryanis we are used to, but the home style version in Samarkand and Bukhara changed our minds
  • Kebab Shashlik: Yes, there were kebabs everywhere. We stuck to the minced meat version and enjoyed their delicately spiced taste. The ones at Caravan in Tashkent were divine!
Dates Stuffed with Walnuts

Walnut-stuffed Apricots

We struggled on the sweet front since local sweets were hard and when we did, we got ripped off. All we could get were these gigantic (or Russian sized) desserts that looked like just colored cake with lots of icing. We did come back with bars of “halwa” from Samarkand – It’s a little like our barfi, and has been polished off. And of course baggage restrictions notwithstanding, we brought home loads of raisins, walnuts and dried apricots.

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    Arastan was an online store that curated rare and handpicked treasures from exotic bazaars along the ancient silk route. Unfortunately we ceased trading in early 2014.

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