Kufta, Ajab Sandal, and cute kids

Before I move on to the rest of this post, check out these recipes and essays, submitted by school kids in Azerbaijan. I think they’re just great. Some are insightful, some sad, and most cute. I especially like the pictures that go with the writing.

I found those while I was looking for recipes, and came across one for something called Ajab Sandal. I don’t know where it comes from, except that at least one person in Azerbaijan makes it. It looked tasty, had more vegetables than some of the other options, and seemed easily veganisable. It is a vegetable and meat stew, with corriander, dill and parsley.

I followed the recipe exactly, using mashed sausages (I had four left over after the piti) instead of mutton mince. It tasted good during my taste tests, and Mr says the final result was good, but I didn’t quite get to tasting it properly.

You see, I have a thing about dill. Its due to a nasty scent-memory from a high school hospitality course. Each student was supposed to make hollandaise sauce. Real hollandaise sauce curdles easily, and is flavoured with dill. 2 1/2 hours of the scent of curdled eggs and butter with dill 9 years ago, and I still can’t stomach the stuff today, as the smell puts me off food. It was  a small miracle that I liked the salad yesterday! Ah well. Dill-phobia aside, it looked good, I initially liked it, and Mr said it was tasty. So check out the recipe and give it a go.

Unfortunately, due to the dill incident, I didn’t get a good photo last night (I avoided the kitchen for a bit). So this photo was taken this morning, of the left overs. It doesn’t look a pretty, but it gives you an idea of what it looks like.

Ajab Sandal

Soup tonight is Kufta-Bozbash. The internet claims that the ingredients are the same as last night’s piti, however the mice is turned into kufta (meatballs), presented in a broth. I had a lot of soup left over from last night, so I decided to get my recycle on. I strained the soup, and mashed the vegies and sausages with my hands. I added some bread crumbs, rolled them into balls, and popped them in the oven on moderate for about 15 minutes. I re-heated the broth, and served the cooked balls in it. My kufta was clearly not the same as if it had been made out of mince, but they tasted good, and were quite fluffy due ot the potato from the soup. The broth tasted wonderfully full bodied and buttery, as it had improved over night.

Kufta Bozbash

It might be worth noting here that we don’t usually eat mutli-stage meals, or nearly this much margarine and faux meat.  In the in between weeks, I’m tempted to make us eat steamed veg and gruel to compensate!

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