The culture of Uzbekistan is vibrant and unique - it was formed over thousands of years, incorporating the traditions and customs that has shaped the modern Uzbekistan.
Uzbek culture has been influenced by Greek, Chinese, Arab and Turkish cultures, which can be seen in Uzbek traditions. Cuisine differs from region to region, which is represented by the national dish of Uzbekistan - Plov or Pilaf, various kinds of one dish, prepared in different ways in different regions.
You can find up to 0.5 million Tatars in Uzbekistan, one of them is our student Deniza.
Tatar culture has more than a thousand-year history, and their origin is associated with the ancient kingdom of the Volga-Kama Bulghars. At that time Tatar culture built its’ foundation for the modern culture we know now.
Originally, Tatars accepted Islam as their main religion, which built the base for Tatar traditional cuisine. With time, Tatar culture got more diverse with the influence of many nations - Bashkirs, Tajiks, Uzbeks, Kazakhs, Chinese, also by cultures of the Volga region, the Urals and Siberia. Such dishes as pilaf, halva, sherbet entered the Tatar cooking quite early. These dishes are also associated with Uzbekistan. However, culinary borrowing and expanding the range of products did not change the basic ethnic characteristics of the cuisine of the Tatars, it made it more diverse.
Uzbek and Tatar specialties of the event
Achichuk Salad 🥗 - the classic Uzbek Achichuk Salad consists of fresh tomatoes, thinly sliced onions, radishes, cucumbers and greens, the salad is dressed with vinegar, soy sauce and oil, and is a perfect pair for some spicy dishes;
Samsa - flaky pastries with various fillings, like vegetables or minced beef with onions that can be shaped differently, our students made round and triangle shaped Samsas;
Chebureki 🥟- a deep fried dough filled with minced meat and loads of onions, also popular in other Eastern, Slavic and Caucasian countries;
Sabzili Salad 🥕- the salad has its’ roots in Korea, and it is considered to be a variation of a Korean dish Kimchi. Usually prepared by using carrots, walnuts, garlic and dressing, and is popular in Post Soviet Union countries, also Latvia;
Plov 🍚 - Plov takes a special place in every Uzbeks’ heart, and how one student said: “It really is delicious! You must try it, in order to understand.”
Uzbek Plov is known as Uzbek Pilaf as well, and is prepared using real yellow carrots , onions, chunks of beef and special rice, and even raisins. The preparation is done exclusively by men.
Students showed us how Plov is prepared in the cast-iron kazan, in the centre of Tashkent - the capital of Uzbekistan. We found out that there are many different kinds of Plov, like Wedding Plov, Holiday Plov and various kinds of Plov named after regions of Uzbekistan - Tashkent Plov, Samarkand Plov and Fergana Plov. It is believed that there are over 60 kinds of Plov in Uzbekistan alone;
As a dessert: Tatar Chak Chak (Çäkçäk)🍯, which is made from unleavened dough cut and rolled into hazelnut-sized balls, which are then deep-fried in oil.The fried balls are stacked in a mound in a special mold and drenched with hot honey;
Dessert was paired with some green tea 🍵 for a complete experience.
Special thanks to Uzbek students of Ventspils University of Applied Sciences - Mirjakhon, Mukhammadsolikh, Alyona, Islom for the presentation, Deniza and others, who helped with the preparation!
Omad yor bo'lsin!