Cooking in Afghanistan is serious business. Large amounts of food must be prepared everyday due to large extended families. For more information and facts read our guide…
Afghanistan is a large country and due to this there is a wide variety of types of food prepared. Each region has its own favorites, but all have some foods in common like rice dishes, the use of yogurts, potatoes, pasta and kabobs. The woman of the family do the cooking normally, but for big events, male cooks are often hired to cook. The males of the family are responsible for doing the grocery shopping.
Up until the war, Afghans would readily take strangers in and feed them. You needn’t worry about having a restaurant nearby; if you became hungry you would just go to the door of a residence and ask for food.
Below are a couple of easy Afghan recipes for you to try. They have been cut into small portions to feed the average western family.
Afghan Chicken Kabobs
1 cup yogurt
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon ground red or black pepper
3 tablespoons garlic, finely minced
1 1/2 pounds chicken breasts, boneless, skinless, cut into chunks
Flatbread such as lavash, pita or flour tortillas
3 tomatoes, sliced
2 onions, sliced
Cilantro to taste
2 lemons or 4 limes, quartered
Thread chicken on skewers and grill over medium hot coals.
Place warmed pita bread on plates (if using tortillas, toast briefly over flame), divide meat among them, top with tomato and onion slices and cilantro and fold bread over. Serve with lemon or lime quarters for squeezing.
Afghan Catfish Stew
Mix yogurt, salt, pepper and garlic in a bowl. Mix chicken with yogurt and marinate 1 to 2 hours at room temperature, up to 2 days refrigerated.
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic finely chopped
1/4 cup ghee or vegetable oil
1 cup water
1 (28 ounce) can whole tomatoes, drained and chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 1/2 pounds catfish fillets, cut into 2-inch pieces
Hot Cooked Basmati or Regular Rice
Cook and stir onion and garlic in ghee in 10-inch skillet over medium heat until onion is tender and light brown. Stir in water, tomatoes, salt, turmeric, coriander and pepper. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally, 15 minutes. Gently stir fish into vegetable mixture. Cover and cook over medium heat until fish flakes easily with fork, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle with chives. Serve with rice. Yields 4 servings.
These recipes are very easy to prepare. Try them and you will get raves from your family and friends. To vary the kabob recipe, you might want to substitute beef or lamb.