The Uzbek Plov also known as Pilaf or Osh is an exceptionally delicious style of biryani from Uzbekistan. Widely claimed to be Stalin’s favourite dish, this rice and mutton based recipe from Uzbekistan is easier to prepare compared to other conventional biryanis. It can be prepared as follows:
- Lamb Meat cut in squares (preferably of a fat lamb) – 0.5 to 1 kg
- 2 – 3 cup Basmati Rice (or Uzbek Rice)
- 3 – 4 big carrots cut in very small pieces
- 2 Onions cut in medium pieces
- 5 Green chilly cut in small pices
- Vegetable Oil
- 4 – 5 garlic with skin
- Salt – 2.5 teaspoon
- Black Pepper powder – 1 teaspoon
- Other spices if necessary (cinnamon, clove etc.) – 1 teaspoon
- Coriander powder – 2 teaspoon
- Coriander Leaves
This dish is to be prepared in good flame in the beginning and hence the vessel you use must have a thick bottom. This ensures that the meat doesn’t get charred.
- Wash the basmati rice and keep it soaked in lukewarm water before you start the preparation.
- Pour the vegetable oil in the main vessel and wait until it gets heated.
- Once the oil gets heated up, add the mutton pieces and fry them until they become light brown.
- Add the onion, carrot and green chilly to this and mix them until the the onion turns golden brown.
- Add salt, pepper powder and other spices that you have selected and continue to mix. You can reduce the flame at this stage.
- Spread the mixture evenly. Filter out the water and add the rice to this mixture. Make sure that the rice completely covers the mutton, carrot and onion mixture. You should stop mixing at this stage.
- Pour water to this without disturbing the rice distribution. The water should completely submerge the rice.
- Once the water starts boiling, close the the lid. Reduce the flame further.
- Wait for 10 minutes and check whether the water has been absorbed into the rice.
- Place the garlic pieces on top of the rice.
- If the rice hasn’t got cooked at this stage, create a small opening at the center of the mixture and add water there without disturbing the structure.
- Close the lid and wait for another 10 minutes.
- Repeat this process until the rice is cooked.
- Turn off the flame and keep the vessel undisturbed for 30 minutes.
You can add coriander leaves after 30 minutes and mix the dish well. When adding water the second time, be sparing in the quantity used because you should not overcook the rice.
Your Uzbek Plov is now ready. You can use Yougurt Kachumber as a side dish. What makes the taste so exquisite is the lamb fat. The mutton gets fried both in the vegetable oil and the fat that comes out of the meat. The first time I prepared this, it didn’t come right. So don’t be disheartened. Try again and you will be fine. The day I saw this recipe in the newspaper, things were a mess but I learned from my mistakes and so should you. This recipe has one extra ingredient, which is green chilly but trust me, it makes the dish amazing. Let me know your feedback!