Tajik Salads and Vegetable Dishes
Tajik salads and vegetable dishes have long been part of local cuisine, due in part to the fact that many Tajiks have always been sedentary and engaged in agriculture. Vegetarian visitors who have grown weary in meat-heavy Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan will have much to look forward to in Tajikistan!
Popular Tajik vegetarian dishes include:
Charcoal tomatoes – In this dish, which is always prepared by men, medium-sized tomatoes should be washed, dried, skewered and placed on a brazier. When the skin of the tomatoes begins to darken, the dish is ready. The tomatoes are then removed from the skewers, seasoned with salt and garnished with herbs and garlic.
Tajik-style eggplants - The eggplants are cut in half and given small indentations with a spoon. A minced meat mixture should be prepared separately by grating onions and carrots and chopping tomatoes, garlic and herbs. The vegetables are added to the cooked meat, seasoned with salt and fried for 3-5 minutes. The minced meat mixture is then spooned onto the eggplant and simmered until tender.
Dugobi kabud - This dish is reminiscent of a Russian food called okroshka. Fresh cucumbers, bell peppers, radishes, green onions and boiled eggs are finely chopped and placed into bowls. Meltted butter and chakka (sour milk) which has been diluted with water are then poured on top.
Gissar salad is a well-known Tajik salad which has been served in national eateries and cooked by housewives for the past century. For this well-known recipe you need to boil and cube beef, potatoes, carrots and eggs. Chopped fresh cucumbers, tomatoes, onions and seasonings such as mayonnaise, butter or salt are then added and all ingredients are mixed together before serving.
Select Tajik salads and vegetable dishes may be enjoyed year-round, but for optimal selection we suggest that you visit in late spring or summer.