Monday, November 24, 2014

BBC Recipe for Uzbek Plov

Plov”, also known as “Osh” is the main dish of all the Central Asian countries. It is rich, filling and very tasty if prepared right. The main ingredients are carrots, onions, rice, oil and meat. It is cooked traditionally in a Kazan but you may use a cast iron Qazon Oven (or if not available a cast iron dutch oven or similar). 

There are many different recipes however a classic Plov is made as follows.

Recipe for Uzbek Plov (osh) for 10 people.- Ingredients:
  • 1 kg moderately fat lamb or beef
  • 1 kg medium grain rice (paella type)
  • 200-250 ml melted lamb fat or vegetable oil
  • 1 kg carrot (4 large carrots preferably yellow)
  • 3-4 medium size onions
  • 2-3 whole heads of garlic (optional)
  • 1-2 long hot chillies (optional)
  • 1-1.5 tbsp cumin and ground coriander
  • salt to taste 
  • black pepper to taste 

1. Wash the rice under the tap until clear, cover with cold water and let it soaks for a while. Cut the meat with bones into match-box pieces. Cut the carrots into 0.5x0.5 cm thick sticks. Slice onions into thin rings or half-rings. Clean heads of garlic remove roots.

2. Heat oil in a min 5 litre cast iron Kazan (or similiar ie. Dutch Oven) on a very high flame, deep-fry meat until golden-brown, in 3-4 batches. Fry the onions until golden, add meat to the Kazan, stir well to prevent onion from burning. Add carrot, stir from time to time, until it starts to wilt and browns a little (15-20 min). Add 2/3 of the spices - rub it in your palms a little to release flavor, stir gentliy to keep carrot from broking..

3. Lower gas to moderate, pour hot water just to cover all the goods, add salt and let it simmer for 40 min to 1.5 hours until almost all water evaporate and meat became tender and juicy. Do not stir.

4. Turn gas to max. Drain rice well, place it on top the meat and vegs in one layer, stick the garlic and whole chillies in it, and carefully pour boiling water over it (place a spoon or ladle on top of the rice to keep the rice layer from washing away). Cover the rice with about 2 cm of water, let it boil. Add salt to make the water a bit over-salted. When water starts to go down, reduce the gas a bit, keeping it boiling rapidly. Check when it has evaporated and absorbed into rice completely - rice should remain rather al dente. Make a holes in the rice to the bottom of a vessel to allow you to check the water level.

5. Reduce gas to absolute min, cover tightly with the lid and let it steam 20 minutes. Turn of the heat, remove the garlic and chillies on the separate plate. Carefully mix rice with meat and carrots, if the rice tastes a bit blind add some salt, mix and let it stand for 5 minutes. Pile the plov on a big warmed plate and serve with garlic, chilies and plain thinly sliced tomato-sweet onions-chili-salt salad. Carefully mix rice with meat and carrots, if the rice tastes a bit blind add some salt, mix and let it stand for 5 minutes.

Sources: (Ed)

Source of Photographs and recommended additional Uzbek Plov Recipe (

Other post see Karakalpak Pilov:

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