RICE IN ALL ITS GOODNESS
RICE AND MAIN DISHES
The great classics of risotto and pasta
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risotto with pork
In the area of Pavia, the “culture of pig” is deep-seated: quand’s gà fam, ghe’l pän e salàm (“when you are hungry, you can have bread and salami”) is still a common saying. In the past, breed a pig meant having a life insurance and when it was killed, once a year, in order to check whether the meat prepared to make salami was good, a little part of it was used to prepare a risotto.
Risotto with saffron
The first identifiable risotto recipe dates back to 1854.
Known as the “king of meals”, Palov employs vegetables, rice, meat and spices, and there are up to 200 varieties. The importance of this dish for the Tajik communities is summarized in the popular saying: “If you eat Oshi Palov at someone’s house, you have to respect him/her for 40 years.” Groups of men or women prepare it either in their home or in the tea houses, while they socialize, play music or sing. The knowledge bound to the practice is handed down from generation to generation in families and cooking schools.
Paloo is the Kirgiz version of a dish that in the Central Asia is commonly called Plov. It’s made of pieces of meat (usually mutton or beef, sometimes chicken) fried in a big qazan (a cast iron cauldron) and mixed with fried chopped carrots, jiuicai (Chinese chive) and cooked rice. The dish is garnished with fried garlic cloves and red peppers. Shirin Paloo is a vegetarian dish where meat has been replaced with dried fruits, such as prunes, apricots and raisins.