Get ready for finger-licking goodness as you tuck into all of the meat and dairy you could ever imagine in Mongolian cuisine. Although this may not be ideal for those who tend towards vegetarianism, this style of cooking is ideal for the carnivores among us. You may have enjoyed a meal at a Mongolian restaurant before, but how much do you really know about this type of cuisine? Hold onto your knives and forks as we take you down the delicious path that leads to this cuisine.
Looking at meals from a different perspective
Those of you who visit Mongolian homes may be met by confusion if you ask for breakfast. Instead, the first meal of the day in Mongolian cuisine is known as morning tea. This meal typically consists of a salted milk tea, clotted cream and fried dough. The midday meal usually contains a mixture of dumplings or noodle soup served with mutton. Finally, dinner in Mongolian cuisine consists of stews made with meat and vegetables, soups, noodles, grilled meats and fried dough. It is also common to find copious amounts of milk and yoghurt at the table. People in Mongolia also enjoy sweet treats to round off the main meal of the day such as spiced biscuits and steamed orange-flavoured desserts.
An amalgamation of cuisines
Ever wondered why Mongolian cuisine is the way it is? Here are some of its influences.
- The Mongolian people are inherently nomadic, which is why their cuisine is heavily influenced by the foods that are eaten in Russia, China and other Asian countries that surround Mongolia.
- Traditionally, individuals in Mongolia eat meats in the winter months, both fresh and dried. Milk would be consumed during the summer. However, as technology advances, it has become more common to find locals enjoying both types of food throughout the year.
- In the past, Mongolian diets did not contain any bread, fruit or vegetables but you may notice that locals have included all of these ingredients into their daily lives.
Noteworthy dishes from Mongolia
Here are some of Mongolia’s most popular dishes:
- Khorkhog: Mongolian Barbeque may be one of the most common dishes from this part of the world, consisting of grilled meat, onions, potatoes and carrots.
- Buuz: These are pretty little dumplings that are stuffed with beef or mutton, onion, garlic and pepper before being steamed until tender.
- Tsuivan: Also known as noodle stew, this dish, which is made with springy egg noodles, carrots, onions, garlic and peppers, is one of the most common side dishes at most Mongolian tables.
- Guriltai Shul: The quintessential lunch dish in Mongolian homes, this noodle dish is cooked in a broth made from the drippings of roasting meat, pepper and salt. This is then topped with slices of meat and a small number of vegetables.
Adventurous? Try these dishes
Want to try something more unusual? Try one of these lesser-known dishes.
- Boodog : This is an impressive dish in Mongolian cuisine. A whole sheep is sliced open and stuffed with potatoes, onions, marmots and hot stones before being placed on a rotisserie grill. The heat from the outside helps to crisp up the skin while the stones cook it gently from within.
- Uuz : This is a speciality that is eaten at New Year. It is made from the lower half and tail of a sheep, cooked in a special oven for three to five hours.
Experience Mongolia at one of these restaurants
Fortunately, you don’t need to visit Mongolia to get your hands on the finest Mongolian cuisine. Enjoy the Mongolian chicken with brown sauce at Wok Master or the Mongolian chicken served with rice and egg at Taste Good.