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Uzbek Plov

Ron G.

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It's that time of year again, and I'm certain eveyone, just like me, is really craving some nutritious and delicious Uzbek Plov!

Just the other day, I went down to the local Daisy Queen and asked the girl for some Uzbek Plov. She looked at me with a rather vacant expression for a few minutes and then just pointed to the menu hanging on the wall.

I guess they were all out, but what else would you expect this time of year.

I realize that each and every one thinks THEIR grandmother made the very best Uzbek Plov, so this recipe is somewhat generic and you may have to modify it some to match what grandma did.

Make it!

Eat it!


Ron's Uzbek Plov

3 Tbsp canola or sunflower oil (ie. high smoking point)

1 lb lamb leg, cut in 1/2″ cubes

2 onions, diced

5 carrots, shredded

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 Tbsp ground cumin

1 tsp paprika

1 tsp salt

2 cups lamb or beef broth


1 cup basmati rice, rinsed well in a strainer

pinch of saffron


1. Blot the cubed lamb with a paper towel or two and get the oil real hot until it starts smoking a little bit in a big ol' pot. Add the meat in one layer and start browning it. As it browns, turn the pieces so they don't get burned. Take the meat out, now, and put it somewhere where the dog can't get to it.

2. Sear the onions in the hot oil until they start to turn brown. Add the carrot shreds and fry them for a few minutes until they start to turn brown, too. Don't burn them or you'll have to start all over.

3. Add the garlic, cumin and paprika and fry for a minute, and then stick the meat back in.

4. Add the broth, bring to a boil, reduce and leave to simmer, covered, until the meat is tender, about an hour.

5. Taste for salt, and add some if you want to. Add the basmati and enough water to cover the rice. Don't stir it. Bring it all to a boil, reduce the heat to simmer it then cover and leave it for 10 about minutes.

6. Dissolve the saffron in a few tablespoons of hot water. Lift the lid on the plov and dribble the saffron water over it without stirring. Replace the lid and continue to cook for another ten minutes or so.

7. Taste it to see if the rice grains are cooked...maybejust a little al dente. Turn off the heat and let it set for a little while.

8. Dump the rice out, then put the meat on top then sprinkle it with some chopped cilantro.

Uzbek Plov goes good with a salad after a bowl of Katya's Ukrainian Borscht. That recipe is around here somewhere.

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