Culinary gateway to the East

by Patricia R. Davis

Azerbaijan’s records with flavor are going returned greater than 2,000 years.

Poised between East and West, in a top region on Silk Road routes, buyers exceeded through right here for centuries, bringing spices, ingredients, and culinary impacts.

Today, the delicacies of Azerbaijan has an Eastern part, rubbing shoulders with dishes from its buddies Iran and Turkey. The local takes on the kebab and pilaf are rich and pleasurable, however, there’s additionally an abundance of fresh, wholesome fruit and greens to be loved.

Here’s our guide to foods and drinks in Azerbaijan.


It may seem counterintuitive, but inside the summer season warmth, Azerbaijanis love to drink hot tea, which is assumed to assist the body cool off clearly.

Even amidst us of a’s blooming espresso way of life, maximum Azerbaijanis still start their day with tea.

In the regions, tea is sort of constantly prepared with keklikotu (oregano) or cinnamon and whilst the water is boiled on a samovar, heated through the burning tree branches, the water is infused with the unmistakable aroma of the woods.

Azerbaijani breakfast

While meal practice can also vary around the united states of America, with neighborhood twists regularly introduced to the standard interpretation, breakfast is pretty equal in all a part of the u. S. A ..

A huge sort of colorful components orbit across the celebrity of this display: freshly baked tandir bread.

Whether it’s honey and qaymaq (a thick cream), goat’s cheese, butter or scrambled eggs with tomato, the crispy bread is a welcome companion to all those meals mixtures.

When getting ready scrambled eggs with tomato, the finely minced tomatoes are fried first, until the pan’s scorching with juice. Only then are the eggs added, and the dish is taken off the stove with a consistency greater liquid than everyday scrambled eggs.

Served in a small pan, the dish is eaten by means of dipping the tandir bread into the savory combination of egg and tomato. The saltless goat cheese at the facet is there to take down some of the saltiness and stability out the palette.

Alternatively, kuku is a pie-looking omelet, a superb choice for individuals who like greens. Fresh coriander, dill and inexperienced onions are finely minced and mixed with five or six eggs and then fried in the pan until crispy.


When it comes to street food, Azerbaijan is well-known for doners — Turkish-fashion meat sandwiches — but qutabs are a lighter choice.

Made in lavash (a thin flatbread), the classic qutab is packed with minced meat; the vegetarian model can also include pumpkin or fresh herbs along with spinach, cilantro, onions and dill, folded in a moon shape and fried on a flat pan with out oil.

The soft-targeted and crispy-edged qutabs are then sprinkled with sumac, the brilliant berry-coloured tangy spice, and fresh pomegranate seeds (when in season). Both meat and herb qutabs are served with ayran, a foamy sour milk combined with water and salt. For proper gourmands there’s additionally a smaller-sized version of qutab packed with minced camel meat, known as jorat qutab.

Mangal salad

Particularly deserving of attention amongst salads is mangal salad, the call originating from the way the main elements — eggplant, bell pepper and tomato — are roasted on a mangal, a Caucasian-fashion grill.

After the roasted veggies are chopped, onions, cilantro, dill, olive oil and crimson basil — a forte in Azerbaijan — are delivered and mixed collectively. The salad is commonly served bloodless as a aspect to the beef kebab and is believed to assist with the digestion of the heavy meats.


This bitter milk-primarily based soup, which may be served both warm and bloodless depending at the season, also incorporates rice, a handful of chick peas and a diffusion of finely minced veggies.

While it’s truthful in terms of ingredients, the preparation requires the chef to continuously stir the ingredients to forestall the rice from sticking.

Levengi chook

Levengi hen may additionally resemble a widespread grilled fowl at the outside, but it hides a scrumptious mystery.

Inside, the stuffing consists of fried onions, roasted walnuts, raisins, dried plums, dried pitted Cornelian cherries are all minced and mixed right into a paste. The richness of the walnuts and the tanginess of the plums make it a need to-try combination.

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