Eating Around the World – Kazakhstan

The Fireman seemed keen to eat from Kazakhstan this week, no idea where he’s heard of Kazakhstan before.  Cuisine is intersting, lots of horsemeat, which meant cooking could be challenging. I chose to cook Beshbarmak, which translates as ‘five fingers’ due to the meal traditional being eaten with your hands, The Farmer eats most things with his hands, including at times yoghurt, so no problems there. It is one of the most popular Kazakh dishes and consists of boiled meat served on thin noodle sheets.  I had to improvise quite a bit.  Beshbarmak is often made with kazy, a horse meat sausage, I substituted it with the only thing I could find in the fridge, chorizo. I based it on this recipe, but changed quite a bit and made it in the slow cooker. I also cheated with the noodles and used lasagne sheets. Here’s the ingredients and method I used and would be plenty to serve 4 adults.

  • 700g rolled brisket
  • 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 1tsp salt
  • 1tsp black pepper
  • 1 large onion
  • 100-150g chorizo sliced
  • 2 carrots chopped in to chunks
  • 3 medium potatoes, peeled and chopped into big cubes
  • Enough boiling water to cover veg in the slow cooker
  • lasagne sheets 2 per person
  1. Marinade the brisket In the garlic, salt and pepper for at least 2 hours before cooking.  Then in a saucepan, fry the brisket on all side to brown the meat and then put in to the slow cooker and turn it to low.
  2. Fry the onion and carrots until starting to soften, add the chorizo and cook for another few minutes. Add these to the slow cooker, then pour over the boiling water to just cover the veggies, continue cooking on low for 6-7 hours.
  3. An hour and a half before cooking time is up add the potatoes.
  4. Turn the slow cooker off and take the meat out to rest for 20mins.  Meanwhile cook the lasagne sheets.  I think they need to be cooked in a big pot of water and stirred often, mine all stuck together.
  5. Place lasagne on the plates, slice the brisket and put on the lasagne, add a couple of spoonfuls of the stock, chorizo and vegetables.

It was all very good, apart from the lasagne, which was OK, but a bit stuck together.  Boys ate most of it, the chorizo was a bit big and quite spicy, but gave the stock a good flavour.
Kazakh Samsa
For dessert I made Kazakh Samsa, deep fried sweet walnut filled pastries, these of course, went down well.  I followed this recipe.
Golden eagle of Kazakhstan
A bit of research showed a tradition of hunting with eagles in Kazakhstan, which only seems to occur as a sports these days.  So we made golden eagles out of loo roll tubes and wings from cut out hands shapes, they look funny, but The Farmer enjoyed it, The Fireman was busy making more Star Wars ships with his Lego.

We also watched this slideshow which gives a small insight into Kazakh life and hunting with eagles, I recommend you watch it.

Next week were taking a break, half term, whoop!!