Month: May 2012

Ava-eats-Mongolia

Menu: Mongolia

Don’t look for bad things in the good that you do. { Mongolian Proverb } I know what some of you are thinking right this very moment: “Mongolia… what on earth is she going to make from Mongolia that I’dΒ like?” Β I know because that’s what my very own Mr. Picky said moments before I presented this simple menu. Cooking him meat would have been too easy. He’d automatically love it. Instead, I went with a vegan carrot salad (what!) and an amazing salty green tea. I wanted to give him something to really think about. I want to make sure this Adventure stays a challenge for his picky sensibilities (although, as usual, both recipes are easy to make and don’t require super strange ingredients). What sounds good to you?* Mongolian Carrot Salad [Recipe] Thinly sliced carrots and raisins, tossed with a simple, garlicky vinaigrette. This would be fantastic on the side of any grilled meat. Mongolian Millet & Green Milk Tea (Suutei Tsai) [Recipe] Buttery toasted millet cooked in milky, salty green tea. Β A note …

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Monastery in Mongolia. Photo by Bouette.

About the food in Mongolia

After the hot, sweaty day I had yesterday, a little stove top travel to the central Asian country called Mongolia is a welcome retreat. Even though the Gobi desert sprawls through southern Mongolia, she is best known for her long, cold winters (especially in the the mountainous north and on the dry, grassy steppes, where temperatures can dip way into – 40 F). Very little grows in dry, chilly Mongolia, but that’s okay. Instead, people rely on an intensely meaty diet. And for good reason – 30% of Mongolia’s population breed livestock (the same number who live a nomadic life). With a lifestyle constantly on the go, the food has to fit in when it can. There’s no slowing down. Nomads move about 5 times a year, generally with the changing seasons. Just about any meat is fair game – the fattier, the better. After all, a diet rich in fat helps keep the body warm in freezing temperatures. Andrew Zimmern pointed out tons of grisly, fatty meats enjoyed in all manner of brothy soups, …

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