This is a classic recipe for a loved-by-everyone Uzbek Plov, also called Pilaf. Plov is the most classic dish of Uzbekistan, consisting of rice, onion, carrots and meat, all cooked slowly in layers in a traditional cast-iron Kazan (essentially, a cauldron). If you don’t have a Kazan lying around, you can sub it for a cast-iron casserole dish. For Uzbeks, plov represents hospitality and identity.
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Uzbek Plov recipe is popular far beyond the borders of Uzbekistan. Growing up in Latvia, we cooked it almost every other week, and it is also loved by so many other nationalities. Simple, easy to find ingredients and outstanding taste has made this dish popular worldwide. So, thank you, Uzbekistan, for creating such a delicious recipe!
Traditionally, Uzbek Plov is made with lamb meat. Beef, pork, or even chicken could be used as a substitute. When trying to choose the best meat cut, just go for the cuts that have a good amount of fat in them, such as chuck, ribs, shanks, or even oxtail.
Pilaf (or pilav, pilau, plov, pulao, polu and palaw) is a rice dish that is cooked in a broth. Depending on its origin, rice pilaf can be accompanied with meat, fish, vegetables, dried fruits or nuts. This method of cooking rice is widespread across the globe and has often been featured on 196 flavours. It is found in many typical recipes in the Balkans, Middle East Latin America
Since then, rice pilaf has spread across the Middle East and has been adopted by the Persians, Arabs, Turks and Armenians. It was introduced in Israel by Bukharan Jews and Persian Jews.
Uzbek plov is traditionally cooked in a Kazan, a sort of large cast iron pot, over an open fire, but cooking in a dutch oven over a gas flame will work just fine. Also, it is possible to save time by cooking the meat first in a pressure cooker before incorporating it in the plov dish. Plov was a huge hit at home. This rice pilaf dish will probably make it to your top. It is quite easy to prepare and includes everything to make it a rich and nutritional dish (meat, vegetables, rice). A must!
1kg - fat lamb, shoulder or ribs
2 large onions
6 large carrots
800 gr of long grain rice
1 head of garlic
200 ml of vegetable/sunflower oil
3 tsp of salt
1,5 tsp of cumin
1 tsp of saffron
1 tsp of ground pepper
1500-2000 lt of hot water
5 litre heavy cast-iron cattle (dutch oven) or bigger, preferably round-bottomed