Xinjiang Polo (pilaf) and more...
- RHplus May 10, 2009 12:44 AM
Just got back from a ten-day trip in Xinjiang.
It was amazing. The culture, the scenery, the weather, everything was truly colorful.
But I am writing today to report on some of the best food I've had in China...
Polo (or 手抓饭）is a local pilaf cooked with a delicately crumbling boiled carrot, miniscule portions of onions, succulent lamp pieces, balanced perfectly with locally sourced raisins and/or pomegranate. Ate this for a full 8 days (as long as I had the freedom to choose). If I can find a good recipe for this, I will want to recreate it at home as a staple dish. (Anybody?)
This pilaf usually comes with a lamb soup (or 羊肉汤). Savoury yet light, the piece of mutton rib that comes with it is so good that I gnawed on the bone for more.
A rice sausage..did not get the name for this dish, which was truly amazing...don't let the appearance fool you. Depending on the place of purchase, it can range in taste from that such as a black bean burrito from chipotle in the US, to the taste of salami with a bouncy fruit trapped inside it. Weird explanation, I know, but the experience was out of my mind.
Naan, called Naang with a silent g in Chinese as well, were excellent in some places, but awful in others. Best places to get them were on the side of the street in small towns, as they may add more garlic or salt to the pieces, and generally took longer to harden. Whatever you do, don't get them at tourist attractions or at the airport!
There are a few more things I had that were worth mentioning, but since I don't recall the names of the dishes, I will leave it up to you to explore. Enjoy!