MUST TRY MONGOLIAN CUISINE
Mongolia’s traditional cuisine varies seasonally. When weather is cold in winter, meat dominates in Mongolians’ diet yet dairy products accounts for a large part of their summer diet. Mongolia’s natural conditions form an unique local diet as well. In the mountain region, yak and horse meat is herders’ favourite meat for winter while in the steppe and arid Gobi mutton is their favourite. Camel and goat meat is often treated with caution as these meats are considered suitable during summer.At the beginning of winter, Mongolians prepare their meat for the following summer via freezing on hang-ropes to get dried by wind throughout winter and spring.
Milk dominates Mongolians’ summer diet while milk is a single source of dozen dairy products. In Mongolia, nomadic people consume horse, cow, yak, goat, camel and sheep milk while producing a variety of dairy products. Dried curd, for instance, is made of from boiled yoghurt after getting separated from its whey. Yogurt is also used to make a cheese from milk. Mongolia’s traditional milk vodka is distilled from fermented milk. A fermented mare’s milk is called airag and its alcoholic substance could lead you to get drunk. Yet airag has medicinal qualities and nomads’ favourite drink and almost replace their main meal during g day time.
HORHOG is a Mongolian barbecue. A chopped meat is cooked by hot stones in a metal pot and often seasoned with wild onion and vegetables. Stones are believed to have heeling power. Thus, people massage their joints and nerve ends with the hot stones.
BOODOG is a barbecue cooked by very traditional methods. When marmot or goat bones are separated from the flesh, the meat is cooked by hot stones inside the skin and cooked from outside on an open fire.
MILK TEA is Mongolia’s national drink and offered to their guests upon they visit. A Georgian green tea is brewed and mixed with milk and salt is a must try beverage of Mongolia.
BANSHTAI TSAI or tea with dumpling and dried meat is another favourite dish for Mongolians. After brewing green tea, it is mixed with fried rice seasoned with barley flower and double cream butter in a big crater. Meantime minced meat seasoned with onion or garlic and salt used to make dumplings. Once dumplings are in the tea, it requires some time to get cooked. Eventually, some milk will be added to get it ready to be served.