Azerbaijani cuisine delights foodies in London [PHOTO]
By Laman Ismayilova
The National Geographic Traveller Food Festival is back in London, Azernews reports citing the British Azerbaijani Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
The food festival offers a great opportunity to explore authentic international cuisine.
London Food Festival includes everything from expert panel discussions to demonstrations and interviews with famous chefs, cookbook authors, experts, and enthusiasts.
The Traveller Food Festival brought together chefs from different corners of the world including Spain, Portugal, Nepal, Sri Lanka, etc.
Azerbaijani chefs are taking part in the food festival for the first time.
National cuisine received well-deserved attention at the London Food Festival.
During the food festival, talented chefs Javid Hasanov and Ruslan Aliza shared secrets of delicious dolma and cabbage rolls at the master class.
Dolma is traditionally stuffed with ground lamb and/or beef, rice, onions, and herbs. In different regions of Azerbaijan, dolma is made of leaves of grape trees, lime trees, quince, beech tree, sorrel, bean leaves, pennycress, and other plants.
The country annually holds the International Dolma Festival where food lovers enjoy various types of this incredible dish.
In 2017, Azerbaijan's dolma was included in the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage list.
As part of the festival, foodies had a chance to taste mouthwatering qutabs and pilaf.
Azerbaijani people can’t really imagine any food table without qutab and pilaf.
Qutab is a type of pancake, stuffed with many ingredients such as herbs, meat, cheese, pumpkin, and beans.
Each region of Azerbaijan has its favorite types of qutabs. You can taste Shamakhi qutab in the north of the country and Jorat qutab in the settlement near Baku.
First, cooking qutab may seem like a complicated job, requiring much craftsmanship. But once you've tried your hand at it and most importantly enjoyed eating it, it will become your favorite homemade fast food.
Azerbaijani cuisine features a large number of pilaf dishes. The traditional cuisine includes over 40 rice recipes.
Each region is famous for its own culinary masterpiece. Shakh Pilaf (Crown pilaf) is the signature dish of national cuisine.
The name of this dish is derived from its shape which resembles the crown of a Medieval Eastern ruler. Pilaf is traditionally presented as the main dish at wedding ceremonies in Azerbaijan.
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Laman Ismayilova is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @Lamiva993