Sunday, August 10, 2008

Afghan guests = Afghan Cusine!

For the past few days, my Uncle has been in town, which means a little more Afghan food than usual!

Here's a couple snapshots:

Faux Qaubili Pilau (Ka-bi-lee)
Long grain Basmati parboiled and steamed with light spices and turmeric for color. Served with sauteed carrots and steamed raisins.

(faux because true Qaubili is cooked in the meat and onion broth, with the meat on the bottom of the pan - this was just water)

Leg of Lamb Kafta Kabobs
Freshly ground and grilled over mesquite hardwood coals, seasoned with loomi, sumac, and various sweet and savory spices, served in a grilled pita with hummus, tomato, and vinegar-marinated red onion.

This was an experience - trimming the ludicrous amount of fat off the leg - winding up with hands that still smelled vaguely like lamb the next morning.

Fantastic though - I ground the lamb in a food processor and mixed it with (somewhat descending by quantity):

Egg white
Flour (for binding, just a tad)
Minced onion, garlic

Loomi (dried lemon)
Black Pepper
Spanish Paprika

Admittedly, this was really more Arab than Afghan, but it's not too far off - we use every spice on there, except for cloves (maybe even that too).

I was a little sad we had no cilantro or parsley - they are delicious in these.

Tip: Since you can, it's worth it to make a tester - just a little tiny patty you throw in a little frying pan to check the seasoning, unless you're following a recipe, or even then! Better than being dissapointed later because you completely forgot the salt - I'm speaking from experience, trust me. =)

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