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Afghan Chicken Kabob

Afghan Chicken Kabob

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Afghan Chicken Kabob

Afghan Chicken Kabob


  • Author: MirriamSeddiq

Description

Americans think they are the meat grillers. But one bite of a good Afghan Kabob recipe and you will start thinking differently.

Kabob is everywhere. There is Iranian kabob, Pakistani kabob, etc etc. Mirriam shares with you some family secrets on why their family kabob recipe is so delicious. Why the marinade makes their meat so tender.

If you like this Afghan Kabob Recipe please like, comment, and subscribe.

If you make the recipe, please take a picture and tag Mirriam on Twitter or Instagram at Mirriam71.


Ingredients

Scale

2 lb of chicken thighs (cut into kabob-size pieces)

2 C yogurt

1/3 C lemon juice

1 tsp paprika

2 tsp onion powder

1 tsp coriander 

1 tsp mint

1 tsp dill

1 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp MSG

1 tsp turmeric

1 tsp garam masala

1 tsp Aleppo pepper

2 Tbs garlic ginger paste

salt to taste

ground black pepper to taste


Instructions

1. Scoop yogurt into bowl large enough to marinade chicken in.

2. Add lemon juice.

3. Add your spices and garlic ginger paste. Stir.

4. Cover chicken and marinade overnight. (At least 2 hours)

5. Skewer on grill (no veggies on skewer!)

6. Enjoy

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Afghan Char Masala Recipe

afghan char masala

This Afghan Char Masala Recipe is widely used in Afghan cooking. We put it on our rice, and meat too. The Black cardamom is something you may not have used in your kitchen but I highly recommend it. 

Our website has a small affiliate store where you can shop for ingredients and kitchen items I use in all of my episodes. We get a small affiliate fee from Amazon if you buy from our links. For example, our store has each of the spices needed to make this spice mix.

Some people get confused on what “masala” means. They see the word in the title of many of the recipes they love but masala is simple any of a number of spice mixtures ground into a paste or powder. So, if you see masala in your dish that just refers to the spice mixture used to make it delicious.

If you stick around Afghan Cooks with any regularity you will find that cardamom, green or black, is a critical ingredient to have around. If you love making our food and tea I would highly suggest to never let your supply of green cardamom get to zero! The cardamom that Afghans used is typically grown in India.

Cardamom is usually green right? Well, black is aged and smoked and so it gets all kinds of amazing smells. The process for making black cardamom is really neat:

Black cardamom is dried over an open fire creating a distinct smoky aroma and flavor. This spice also has notes of resin and camphor, as well as menthol, a slightly minty aroma that provides balance to an otherwise funky flavor.

If you like the Afghan Char Masala recipe, a similar Indian masala would be garam masala.

If you want some other common recipes I recommend you look at our yogurt sauce recipe, chutney recipe, and eggplant dip recipe.

The mix is easy. Just think “the three c’s.”

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afghan char masala

Afghan Char Masala Recipe


  • Author: MirriamSeddiq

Description

This Afghan Char Masala Recipe, if this is your first masala to make, is a perfect entry into trying to make your own spice mix. It is a very simple recipe and will impress your friends, Afghan or not.

Just store it in an airtight jar and you are good to go for a good long while.


Ingredients

Scale

1 Tbs cumin

1 Tbs black cardamom

1 Tbs cinnamon

1 Tbs clove


Instructions

Take each spice and place it into your grinder. Grind until finely ground. Use on rice or meat dishes. 

This recipe is easily scalable. It is equal parts each ingredient so make a big batch if you like.

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Sour Cherry Jam

Sour Cherry Jam

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Sour Cherry Jam

Sour Cherry Jam


  • Author: MirriamSeddiq

Description

This sour cherry jam is quick! We wanted to show you how simple it is by doing a YouTube #shorts video in under a minute! The depth of flavor on this recipe is special. The honey, lemon, and salt send your tongue in all kind of directions.

Enjoy!


Ingredients

Scale

400 g Frozen Cherries

1/2 C Sugar

1 tsp Salt (coarse)

2 Tbs Honey

Juice of one lemon

1/2 Blood Orange segmented (can be regular orange)

Then, Juice of the other half of orange


Instructions

Bring all to a rolling boil.

Let it reduce until thickened.

 

Notes

Before you started, put plate in freezer. 

Once you think reduced enough, put jam on plate. If jam drips down plate too fast, let it reduce more.

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Bolani Recipe – Afghan “Hot Pockets”

Afghan Bolani

Afghan Bolani is world famous. Now you have the bolani recipe!

No, this isn’t hyperbole, I mean it look it up yourself? You don’t want to look it up? Ok, here’s the link from CNN travel 2019 that backs me up. My kids gave this the name “Afghan hot pockets” when they were even younger than they are now. I mean, what kid doesn’t love a hot pocket (stop it food snobs.) And you can get your kid to love leeks this way too!

Our website has a small affiliate store where you can shop for ingredients and kitchen items I use in all of my episodes. We get a small affiliate fee from Amazon if you buy from our links. We appreciate your support.

This bolani recipe is easy to make, but like any stuffed bread the rolling of individual hot pocket doughs is a bit time consuming but you can make a bunch at once and freeze them. Just pull them out as you want them, stick them in the oven and enjoy. (If you make them small enough you can even put them in the toaster.)

I mean, with this description by CNN, how could you NOT make this recipe?

After rolling out the yeast-leavened dough into a thin sheet, Afghan bakers layer bolani with a generous filling of potatoes, spinach or lentils. Fresh herbs and scallions add bright flavor to the chewy, comforting dish, which gets a crispy crust when it’s fried in shimmering-hot oil.

I’m super lucky because my aunt periodically cuts up HUGE lots of leeks and when she has extra she brings me giant bags. I have a bag of bolani recipe leeks in my freezer lol. The truth is, we do make a lot of vegetarian dishes that are delicious. I think there are three keys to our success. In any vegetable recipe add either bread, rice, or oil.

I recommend serving this with Afghan garlic yogurt sauce and cilantro chutney. Please come over to my twitter or Instagram to say hi to me. @mirriam71 is my handle.

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Afghan Bolani

Bolani Recipe – Afghan “Hot Pockets”


  • Author: Mirriam Seddiq

Ingredients

Scale

For the dough

  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 3/4 cup water

For the filling

  • 5 leeks – wash thoroughly in between the leaves 
  • 3 potatoes – peeled 
  • salt
  • 1 tblsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tblsp coriander seeds
  • 2 tsp turmeric 
  • jalapeno/red pepper flakes (optional)

Instructions

Prepare the filling

  • Peel and cut your potatoes into quarters. You can boil them on the stovetop until they are fork tender. You can also put them in a microwave safe bowl covered with water and cook them, covered, in the microwave for about 6 minutes. 
  • While your potatoes are cooking, heat a small frying pan on medium heat and add the cumin seeds, coriander seeds. I know a lot of people don’t do this, but I don’t like the taste of raw spices in my filling so this is the method I’ve come up with. Make sure you keep the pan moving so all sides of the seeds get toasted, this should take about 30 seconds to 1 minute if your pan is hot enough. Add the turmeric and just let it cook for another 20 seconds. Take off the heat and put it in a spice grinder or use a mortar and pestle and grind finely. Set aside.
  • When your potatoes have cooked, drain them and set them aside to cool. Once they’ve cooled, mash them up. They shouldn’t be a paste or like whipped mashed potatoes but just a rough mash with some texture still left to them. 
  • Chop your leeks into fairly small pieces. Not too big and not too fine either. You want texture in your filling. 
  • Mix the leeks and potatoes together and add the spices, salt and pepper or jalapeno if you are using it. Mix it well. Set aside while you make your dough. 

Make the dough

  • In a large bowl, combine the flour, salt and oil. Stir together.
  • Add the water slowly. Pour a bit then stir, continue to pour until it makes a soft dough.
  • If the dough is too stiff and dry, add more water on tablespoon at a time. If it is too wet, add more flour one tablespoon at a time. What you are looking for is a dough that is soft and pliable. 
  • Knead the dough on a floured surface for about 3 minutes. It should be nice and bouncy and soft – that’s when you know its done. Place back into the bowl, cover and let it rest for about 10 minutes.
  • After 10 minutes your dough is ready to roll into smaller balls. You should be able to get 12 bolani out of this. But it will depend on how thinly you roll your dough and how big or small you make the bolani. 
  • Break a small piece of dough off the larger ball with your hands. Roll it into a ball. Do this until you run out of dough. Cover the smaller dough balls with a damp paper towel so they don’t dry out. Have your filling, a fork, some flour and water near by.
  • Flour your work surface and roll out one piece of dough. Roll it until you can see the work surface underneath the dough. Don’t worry if it isn’t a perfect circle. 
  • Place the filling on half of the dough circle. Don’t overfill it – but don’t be stingy either. make sure you flatten the filling so you can get a nice, flat bolani. 
  • Fold the other half over the filling half. Seal with a fork. I usually end up wetting my fingers and folding the dough over to make sure the filling stays inside the dough. 
  • Repeat with the rest of the dough.
  • You can make these one of two ways – shallow fry or deep fry. 
  • For shallow fry (which is what I do in the video) Make sure your skillet or frying pan is hot then thoroughly coat the bottom of the pan with oil. Add the bolani once the oil is hot. Fry until golden brown then flip and fry on the other side. This should take about anywhere from 2-3 minutes depending on how thin your bolani are. 
  • Once they are brown, remove from the oil and place on a paper towel to drain the oil.
  • If you are deep frying (which I did after I made the video) add about 3 inches of oil to a pan and set over medium-high heat. Make sure the oil doesn’t go over 360 degrees. Add the bolani and fry until golden brown and crispy on both sides. If your oil is hot enough this should take 1-3 minutes. 
  • Drain on paper towel.

Serve with garlic yogurt sauce and green cilantro chutney.  

 

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Afghan Green Sauce – Chatney – Cilantro Chutney

afghan recipes

Afghans can’t do without their pickles and pickled things. We eat a sour thing with just about every meal. This green sauce is hugely popular in Afghan restaurants and kebab shops. You can make it as spicy or as mild as you like. It’s bracing with it’s vinegar content and really is a nice addition to rich meat dishes or really, just about anything. Add yogurt to it and turn it into a creamier dipping sauce for bolani or for salads.

First,  our website has a small affiliate store where you can shop for ingredients and kitchen items I use in all of my episodes. We get a small affiliate fee from Amazon if you buy from our links. We appreciate your support.

This is our most popular YouTube video with over 6,000 views and growing. This cilantro chutney is the best combination of easy to make / easy to use with everything. If you make one dish on Afghan Cooks first, make this one. If you make this recipe, and the garlic yogurt recipe we have, you’ll have two basic toppings that can be added to almost any dish you can think of.

We hope you aren’t one of those people where cilantro tastes like soap. 😉 When making this Afghan green sauce, feel free to adjust the recipe to make more or less sauce. The ingredients here will make one large mason jar’s worth of chatney.

Did you know we are also on Instagram? If you aren’t a “youtuber” you can catch lots of information and videos on our Instagram as well. We are “afghancooks.”

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afghan recipes

Afghan Green Sauce – Chatney – Cilantro Chutney


  • Author: Mirriam Seddiq

Ingredients

Scale
  • 4 bunches cilantro roughly chopped (use the whole thing – stems and leaves)
  • 8 cloves garlic peeled
  • 1 jalapeno (optional. You can add more or less. 1 just gives you the hint of heat.)
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 cups vinegar (I use a blend of apple cider and white vinegar – 1 cup of each. You can also use red wine vinegar. I would not recommend balsamic.)
  • A few grinds of black pepper

 


Instructions

Put the cilantro into a food processor or blender and pulse until it becomes very finely chopped. You may have to do this in batches. Once the cilantro is very finely chopped add the garlic and jalapeno and blend or process again. Slowly add the vinegar until it becomes a fairly think sauce. Put it in a tightly covered jar. It will be vibrant green when you first make it and will darken over time. 

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Qatlama- Afghan Fried Sweet Pastry

qatlama recipe

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qatlama recipe

Qatlama – Afghan fried sweet pastry


  • Author: Mirriam Seddiq
  • Total Time: 45 minutes

Description

I’m addicted to this Afghan fried sweet pastry dessert. I mean it. I ate three of them right after I made them. I made a dozen when I was practicing and they were gone in 20 minutes. I made another dozen for the video. After that, I made another dozen to take photos (don’t ask, I haven’t mastered the art of streamlining this whole thing yet.) I also discovered you can make these vegan by swapping the butter for a non-dairy butter substitute and using a vegan sugar and it still tastes just as good. But why wouldn’t a fried sweet, flaky pastry covered in powdered sugar taste good?  

I don’t think I’d seen this dessert until I got curious about why Afghanistan was so limited in it’s desserts and started to do some research. I found out that while it doesn’t have a huge dessert culture, it does have a variety of sweet breads that are fried, flaky, and topped with sugar or sugar syrups that are meant to be had with tea. And they are super easy to make (although they do take just a tiny bit of time) and you get really spectacular results. It looks like you spent all day making these gorgeous rose bud looking flaky pastry. It’s a cross between a croissant and a funnel cake. Make the dough, then chop your pistachios. By the time the pistachios are chopped, your dough should be well rested and ready to roll out. 


Ingredients

Scale

1 1/4 cup flour

3 tbsp oil 

1/2 cup water

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp baking powder

1/4 cup sugar 

1/2 stick butter – melted then cooled

Oil for frying (several cups since these need to be deep fried)

Powdered sugar

Chopped pistachios


Instructions

Make the dough

  • Put the flour, salt, sugar and baking powder in a mixing bowl and stir together until it’s all combined well.
  • Add the oil and stir again. 
  • SLOWLY add the water. This way you can control the amount of water that goes in because recipes can really only give you an estimate of how much water your dough will need. As you add it, mix it together until it forms a soft ball that isn’t sticky but feels nice and pliable. 
  • If you add too much water, add flour by the tablespoon until you have a nice, soft dough that isn’t sticky. 
  • If you don’t have enough water, add it by the tablespoon until you have a nice, soft dough that isn’t too sticky.
  • Knead the dough on a floured surface for about 3 minutes, until it feels soft and a bit bouncy when you press your finger into it.
  • Put the dough back in a bowl, cover and let it rest for about 10 minutes. 

Chop the pistachios

  • You want a rough chop so they still have some texture, not a fine powder so just use a knife and have at it. Set them aside. 

Roll out your dough

  • Put your dough onto a floured surface and cut it into four equal parts.
  • Roll each small part into a ball. Set three of them aside and work on the one you’ve got in front of you. 
  • Roll the dough ball out until it is very thin and you can see the work surface under the dough. Don’t worry if it takes a while. Practice makes not really perfect, but less of a hassle. Try to roll it into a circle but really, if you don’t that’s ok too. 
  • Brush melted butter over the circle you’ve just rolled out and sprinkle a bit of flour over the melted butter surface. This is what separates the layers and makes them each flaky. Set that circle of dough aside.
  • Roll out the next dough ball. When it is roughly the same size as the first one, put it on top of the first one. Butter that piece, sprinkle with flour. 
  • Repeat with the third dough ball. Butter it, sprinkle with flour, put it on top.
  • Roll out your fourth dough ball. Place it on top of the buttered and floured dough circles. 
  • Now you are going to roll out all four pieces of dough together. (this is where the video comes in handy) Roll it in all directions until it is an exceptionally thin circle. You will be surprised at how much bigger it can get. Be patient. 
  • Once you’ve rolled it out, brush the dough with butter and sprinkle it with flour.
  • Roll the entire dough circle up like you are making cinnamon buns or a jelly roll. It doesn’t need to be too tight. 
  • Cut the dough into 1″ pieces. Use a sharp knife so you don’t completely mush the dough. 
  • Take the loose end of each of the 1 inch pieces and press it to the bottom of the disc. Then use your palm and flatten the entire disc. Repeat with each of the other pieces.
  • Heat your oil to 340 degrees. 
  • Take each palm-flattened disk and roll them out once again with a rolling pin. Make sure the rolling pin and the surface is floured. They do not need to be rolled out too thin. But they should be about 2-3″ in diameter.
  • When the oil is hot, add the dough. The dough will sink to the bottom then you will hear a crackling sound as it floats to the top. Flip them to make sure they get golden brown on both sides. This takes about 5 minutes. 
  • Put the qatlama on a rack to let the oil drain off. Putting them on a rack instead of a paper towel also allows them to maintain their crispness since they don’t sit in the oil.
  • Once the qatlama is cooled, dust with powdered sugar and sprinkle pistachios in their centers.

Notes

I suggest only using white flour and while I tried to make these in the air fryer, it just doesn’t work. You can double, or triple this recipe easily. The ratios remain the same. The dough keeps pretty well too, you can put it in the fridge and then take it out about an hour before you want to make these. I put chocolate in the centers in some of them instead of pistachios, but the sour cherry filling is the biggest hit. Of course. 

  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 25
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Frying
  • Cuisine: Afghan

Keywords: Dessert, pastry, fried pastry, fried dough, Afghan dessert, Afghan food, funnel cake, flaky food, flaky cake, sweet bread, easy dessert recipe, fried dessert

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Borani Kadoo – Kaddo – Afghan Pumpkin

borani kadoo

Some people are surprised when they hear that one of the most popular dishes in Afghanistan is pumpkin. Borani Kadoo – Kaddo is a delicious mix of roasted pumpkin (or other squash) mixed with creamy yogurt and rich fried onions.

How could that go wrong? No need to have the same old boring side dishes at dinner. Enjoy this pumpkin dish that you don’t even have to carve.

Quick note: our website has a small affiliate store where you can shop for ingredients and kitchen items I use in all of my episodes. We get a small affiliate fee from Amazon if you buy from our links. We appreciate your support.

The video is the best way to learn this recipe. The way the cool yogurt plays off of the crispy onions and smokey pumpkin is to die for.

I didn’t grow up eating this dish because, allegedly, my dad didn’t like it. But, I have to say, he must never had it made well because it is delicious and I’m a little upset that I went this long without making it. This dish is very popular at Afghan restaurants, and there are a lot of variations – some are sweetened, some fry the pumpkin first and others are made the way I make it here. Pumpkin grows in Afghanistan, but it is hard to get eating pumpkins in the States this time of year, but you can use any winter squash. I used butternut squash and it turned out really well, if I do say so myself. Make sure you have a batch of garlicy Afghan yogurt sauce because this dish needs it. 

Borani Kadoo is a dish you will make again and again. Check out our yogurt sauce recipe here.

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borani kadoo

Borani Kadoo – Kaddo – Afghan Pumpkin


  • Author: Mirriam Seddiq
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Ingredients

Scale

1 winter squash or pumpkin, peeled and cubed

2 tblsp oil

1 large onion, chopped

2 tomatoes, chopped

1 1/2 tblsp ginger-garlic paste of 4 cloves garlic, minced and 2 tsp ginger, minced

2 tblsp tomato paste

about 1 to 1 1/2 cups water

salt

black pepper

2 tsp turmeric

1 tblsp coriander

1 tblsp cumin

red pepper flakes or aleppo pepper

garlicky Afghan yogurt sauce


Instructions

  • Heat oil in large saucepan.
  • When oil is hot, add onions and cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes until the onions are translucent and some start to brown. Stir frequently.
  • Add chopped tomatoes, tomato paste and ginger garlic paste. Cook and stir for another 3 minutes until the tomato paste gets a deep red color.
  • Add the turmeric, salt, black pepper, cumin and coriander. Cook for 1 minute stirring frequently. 
  • Add about 1/2 cup water and stir to combine all ingredients. You want to make sure the tomato paste is fully incorporated and there are no lumps of it in the sauce. 
  • Add another 1/2 cup to 1 cup of water to the saucepan. The consistency of the sauce should be similar to heavy cream or half and half. It should be thick but still easily pourable. Cover and let simmer over medium-low heat for about 15 minutes. Check and stir frequently to make sure the sauce doesn’t get too thick. If it does, add more water so it remains that same consistency. 
  • Cook until the tomatoes are completely broken down. 
  • Add squash. Stir so that all of the squash is covered in the sauce. Set on medium heat, cover and cook for about 25 minutes. Stir and check on it frequently. The squash is done when it is fork tender. You do not want it to turn into mush.

To Serve

  • Pour a thin layer of garlicky Afghan yogurt sauce on the bottom of a large serving platter.
  • Add the squash on top of the yogurt sauce.
  • Drizzle more yogurt sauce on top of the squash.
  • Top with chopped parsley or cilantro.
  • Serve with rice, Afghan bread or pita.

Enjoy! 

Notes

Borani Kadoo will win friends and influence people. If you make the dish, make sure you tell us on the Gram!

  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 40
  • Category: Side dish
  • Cuisine: Afghan

Keywords: Pumpkin, vegetarian, squash, winter, vegetable, sauteed vegetables

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Afghan Yogurt Sauce

Afghan Garlic Yogurt Sauce

If you live in an Afghan home, you will have afghan yogurt sauce at almost every meal. And, once you’ve had it, you will do the same. The Afghan yogurt sauce is cool, creamy, sour, and deliciously herbal. It pairs well with both veggies and meat alike.

quick note – our website has a small affiliate store where you can shop for ingredients and kitchen items I use in all of my episodes. We get a small affiliate fee from Amazon if you buy from our links. We appreciate your support.

Afghan food is not generally very spicy. But, our dishes are quite rich. Fatty lamb, tender beef, and chicken every where. We have multiple sauces and side dishes that help cut those rich dishes. Even our vegetable dish are rich. That is recipes like this Afghan yogurt sauce, and our cilantro chutney come in handy.

Although not required, if you can get your hands on some Afghan kashk, it will make for a special Afghan yogurt sauce. Kashk is made from drained yogurt (in particular, drained qatiq) or drained sour milk by shaping it and letting it dry. It can be made in a variety of forms, like rolled into balls, sliced into strips, and formed into chunks.

Make this! You will use it for everything – on top of soups, salads, chicken sandwiches, as a dip, as a companion for a Saturday walk or a Sunday drive. Seriously. We will be using this for many recipes on Afghan Cooks (or some variation of this.) So make up a batch!

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Afghan Garlic Yogurt Sauce

Afghan Garlic Yogurt Sauce


  • Author: Mirriam Seddiq
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

Make this! You will use it for everything – on top of soups, salads, chicken sandwiches, as a dip, as a companion for a Saturday walk or a Sunday drive. Seriously. We will be using this for many recipes on Afghan Cooks (or some variation of this.) So make up a batch!


Ingredients

Scale

Yogurt

Sour cream (optional)

Kashk (optional)

45 cloves garlic minced

salt

lemon juice

water

dill

mint


Instructions

The only real instruction here is this – make this according to your taste. If you only have yogurt here are the proportions for 2 cups

Stir together 2 cups yogurt, 1/4 cup lemon juice, 1 tbsp dill, 1 tbsp mint, pinch of salt and garlic. Stir together. Add water until the sauce can be drizzled. If you want it thicker, use less water. We make a very thin version of this and keep it in a squeeze bottle.

You can mix the yogurt with sour cream and/or kashk if you can find it. The rest of the ingredients are the same but its important for you to taste it and add more or less mint, lemon juice, dill and salt depending on your own taste. Taste taste taste! this Afghan yogurt sauce will please the entire family.

  • Prep Time: 10
  • Category: Sauce
  • Cuisine: Afghan

Keywords: dip, sauce, salad, salad dressing, appetizer, yogurt sauce, garlic yogurt sauce, garlic, kashk, sour cream, afghan food, afghan yogurt, afghan dip, afghan sauce

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Mashawa Soup – Afghan Vegetable and Barley Soup

Mashawa Soup

Have you been in the mood for trying a new soup that is hearty but healthy? Well, Afghans have a soup for you: Mashawa. I make mine vegetarian here. There is something so satisfying about a soup that will fill you up without slowing you down during the day.

quick note – our website has a small affiliate store where you can shop for ingredients and kitchen items I use in all of my episodes. We get a small affiliate fee from Amazon if you buy from our links. We appreciate your support.

Afghan Mashawa Soup

This soup has all the Afghan recipe regular ingredients such as chickpeas, dill, yogurt, onions, and coriander. Just Americans love to top their chili with sour cream, we often top our dishes and soups with yogurt. Yogurt is nice because it is not as gloopy as sour cream and usually it is more healthy.

Some people insist that they need meat for dinner but you can change their mind with Mashawa. If you are ever in New York City, there is a wonderful Afghan food truck called Nansense. They have so many delicious items. Look how the New York Times describes their mashawa:

One last dish is mashawa, a soup thick as stew and built for winter. Mung beans, black-eyed peas and chickpeas are softened and fused with rice, carrots, turnips and potatoes. It’s suffused with dill, which adds an unexpected sunniness. With each spoonful, I felt like I could walk a hundred miles — or sleep for hours.

New York Times, November 29, 2018.

Mashawa is a soup that will appeal to anyone in your group. Make a large pot of this on a rainy day and you will have some very happy guests. If you try this and love it, you should try our other soup recipes for shorwa and aush. Shorwa is a bread soup, how cool is that?

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Mashawa Soup

Mashawa Soup – Afghan Vegetable and Barley Soup


  • Author: Mirriam Seddiq
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

Shorwa is perfect for a cold day. Like many of the other recipes, it can be adapted to your taste and to what you have around the house. View the recipe as a template. If you are new to cooking, start by following the recipe for this vegetable soup exactly, then when you feel more comfortable, change it up. 


Ingredients

Scale

1 cup barley or cracked wheat

1 cup kidney beans (dried or canned)

1 cup chick peas (dried or canned)

1 1/2 cup lentils

1 large onion, chopped

2 tbsp ginger garlic paste or 4 cloves garlic and 2 tsp ginger, minced

3 tbsp oil

2 tbsp tomato paste

2 large tomatoes or 4 small chopped

1 tbsp coriander

1 tbsp cumin

2 tsp turmeric

salt and pepper to taste

1 tbsp dill

chili flakes (to taste)

green onions

cilantro/parsley

46 cups water


Instructions

Cook Lentils 

  • Wash and drain the lentils several times before you use them.
  • In a medium pot, add lentils and cover with water. There should be about 3 inches of water over the lentils. Bring to a boil then turn down the heat to medium-low, cover and cook. Depending on the lentils this could take anywhere from 6-15 minutes. Split lentils will take less time. Whole lentils more. 
  • When the lentils are cooked, drain them and set them aside.

Prepare the barley

  • Rinse and drain the barley or cracked wheat
  • Put oil in the pressure cooker or instant pot and allow to heat, add the onion and fry until a light golden brown. Don’t rush it.
  • Add the ginger garlic and cook another minute
  • Add the tomato paste and all of the spices except the dill. Stir and cook until the tomato paste is a dark red color. 
  • Add the tomatoes and cook until they begin to break down. 
  • Once the tomatoes have broken down, put the barley and any dried beans you may be using into a pressure cooker and cover with 4-6 cups of water depending on the size of your cooker or instant pot. The barley will take about 20 minutes to cook. 
  • You will know the barley and beans are cooked when they have a give to them when you bite into them. They should not be mushy. The cooking liquid will be thick. If it needs more water, add more at this point and stir. Check for salt. Add more spices if you feel it is lacking. Remember, this is your recipe.
  • Add the canned beans, dill and the lentils and allow to warm thoroughly. This should only take about 5 minutes. 
  • Serve topped with green onions, yogurt sauce and parsley or cilantro and enjoy. 

Notes

I make this dish when I have dried beans I need to use up but that aren’t enough for a whole dish on its own. So, in the video below I used a mixture of black beans and black eyed peas, and red split peas (which took only a few minutes to cook.)

  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 30
  • Category: Soup
  • Method: Pressure Cooker
  • Cuisine: Afghan

Keywords: soup, afghan soup, bean soup, vegetable soup, vegetarian soup, vegan soup, barley, barley soup, grain, afghan food, afghan dishes, afghanistan

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Afghan Eggplant Dip

Eggplant Dip

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Eggplant Dip

Afghan Eggplant Dip


  • Author: Mirriam Seddiq
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

Afghans love eggplant. I’ve loved it my entire life – fried, stewed, in an eggplant dip. Honestly, I didn’t even know this dish could be served as a dip on it’s own since we’ve always had it as a side dish with rice and meat and all the other good Afghan food. But, I’ve discovered that this creamy eggplant dish is fresh and satisfying on its own, no rice required! (But I mean, if you’ve got rice eat it!)

This dip is similar to babaganoush, which is the most well known eggplant dip that I know, but the addition of dill and mint making this a snack that wakes your mouth up. You can easily make this vegan by using a non-dairy yogurt or sour cream while keeping the rest of the ingredients the same. Serve it with bread, pita, or veggies on your charcuterie board, or just on it’s own as an appetizer. Or as a side dish, the way Afghans do.

 


Ingredients

Scale

2 medium to large eggplants cut in half lengthwise

1 head garlic

1 medium onion peeled and cut in half

1/4 cup yogurt

1/4 cup sour cream

3tbs lemon juice

1 1/2 tsp salt

2 tsp dill

2 tsp mint

1/2 tsp black pepper

olive oil 

sumac (optional)

parsley or cilantro (optional)


Instructions

Roast your vegetables

  • Preheat your oven to 500 degrees F
  • Spray a baking sheet generously with oil
  • Place the vegetables on the baking sheet (the head of garlic should have the ends cut off so it sits flat and a small portion of the flesh of the cloves is exposed) and spray them with olive oil.
  • Put vegetables in the oven and set timer for 10 minutes. Check the veg after 10 minutes. The eggplant skin should be wrinkled and the flesh should be very soft. If they aren’t done, roast for another 5-7 minutes.
  • By this time all of your vegetables should be done. Your onions should be slightly charred and the garlic should be soft. 
  • Set the vegetables aside to cool.

Make your yogurt sauce

  • In a small bowl, combine the yogurt, sour cream, salt, pepper, dill and mint. Stir to combine. 
  • Add the lemon juice and continue to combine.

The finished product

  • When the vegetables are cool enough to handle, lay the eggplant, flesh side up, on a flat surface and use a spoon to scoop out the flesh into a medium mixing bowl, food processor or blender.
  • Add the roasted onion and 4-5 cloves of the roasted garlic (peeled, of course) to the container. 
  •  Blend (I use an immersion blender) just until all of the vegetables are combined. You don’t want it to turn into a paste. Just make sure there are no big bits of onion or garlic and its a homogenous mixture. 
  • Put the eggplant dip into a serving bowl and add the yogurt sauce. Stir to combine thoroughly.
  • Don’t forget to check for salt. Add more if needed. 
  • Smooth the top of the dip and make a little valley in the center. 
  • Pour some good olive oil over the dip and pool some into the valley.
  • Top with sumac and parsley. 
  • ENJOY!

 

Notes

I cannot live without my immersion blender. I’ve had a Braun for about 20 years. They don’t make the one I have anymore (and if you can get it it’s 130 dollars) But this one is similar. It doesn’t have any of the bells and whistles but I never use any of the other attachments anyway so why spend the extra money to have stuff sit in a drawer? 

If you watched the video, you’ll notice my baking sheets are also very, very old. I’ve had these since 1996 I’m not kidding. I don’t want to recommend any of the ones out there currently because the newer ones might not be as good or as heavy. I’m sure these were inexpensive when I got them since I was just a law student at the time. But, my recommendation is to actually touch the sheets to make sure they are substantial – you don’t want your cookies, etc. burning through thin metal. 

  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 20
  • Category: Appetizers
  • Method: Roasting
  • Cuisine: Afghan

Keywords: eggplant dip, dip, roasted eggplant dip, appetizers, charcuterie board, eggplant, roasted, vegan, vegetarian dip, vegan dip, vegetarian dip, afghan food