Michael Sean Strickland

Books I’ve Read


411 — Bailey, F. M. (1946). Mission to Tashkent. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 1992, 2002. 20 January 2004, Philadelphia.

« This is how we made the pilau. We had a semi-spherical iron cooking pot. This was put on the fire and we cut up the fat of the tail of a fat-tailed sheep into little cubes like dice and threw them in. While they were melting we cut up some onions. We then removed the small hard bits of the fat which had not melted from the pan, and these were later put into our loaves of bread. We put the onions in to cook in the melted fat and while this was going on we cut up some carrots. We then threw these in and cut up our meat. This was then put in and we washed our rice in cold water. When this was ready, some sultanas were put into the pan, if we had them, and then the rice was added. Then, immediately before the rice could burn, we poured in water until it was the depth of the top little finger joint over the rice. The whole thing was then allowed to cook until the water had boiled away and the surface of the rice was dry. The dish was then ready, but it was improved by being covered and kept hot (but not cooked) for a few minutes while we got our plates and spoons. Then, and not till then, did we stir it, bringing up all the earlier ingredients to the top and mixing it thoroughly. I can only say that done in this way the dish was excellent » (p. 99).

« There seems to be a provision of nature that onions take just so much longer to cook than carrots as it takes to cut up the latter, and both of these so much longer than the meat, and so on. There is a school of thought which insists that the carrots should go in before the onions and I have listened to heated controversies on this important subject. In addition to the above we had bread which Garibaldi baked every few days and an unlimited quantity of honey from the three hundred and sixty pounds in large zinc containers lying in the store-room ready for market. We also had such things as tea, sugar, salt, etc., which Eshan brought up periodically from Brich Mulla » (p. 99).

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