Vegetarian Mince

January 28th, 2015 Sections: Food and Drink

The other day I was doing some research for one of our other sites: tastes.kg.

Normally we are looking for ethnic dishes – Kyrgyz traditional cuisine, Uzbek, Uighur … that sort of thing – but Kyrgyzstan, (and Bishkek in particular), offers a wide variety of dishes.

As it happens, I was looking for vegetarian dishes, (and in particular for a Dungan dish – Vegetarian Burgers), and although I didn’t find the one I was looking for … I did find several interesting recipes which I decided I must try one day.

I had another reason for wanting to find new and interesting recipes: I was trying to “kill two birds with one stone”.  I still have to be careful what I eat, (the doctor says simple fare for at least two more months – and maybe longer), and, to be honest, I find that I am getting a little tired of soups and pasta; boiled meat and plain salads.  I hoped that I might find something to vary the diet.

As it happens, my interest in this dish wasn’t so much about the burgher themselves, (they have to be fried and I am not allowed fried foods.  I have been able to eat “cutlets”, the local version, but boiled … but I have to admit that I am getting a little tired of them), but the base … as replacement for minced meat.

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Back home, one of my regular “standby” dishes, was Cottage Pie, (essentially a base of minced meat, covered with a topping of mashed potato), and I also like Lasagna, (interlaced layers of pasta and minced meat).

I thought, (hoped),  that I might find something that I could use instead. I have found several recipes, but most require “Soya mince”. (or Quorn as it’s known in the UK), and I haven’t found any of that here.    

I have also found recipes which involve shredding Beans or Mushrooms … but the one I was particularly looking for used rice and eggs.   

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My search took me to a collection of recipes that contained over thirty main courses “made from vegetables”.

They weren’t really ethnic dishes, and nor were they vegetarian … at least, the first one was for a Pot with Cabbage, Potato and Chicken (!) and there was also a recipe for Potatoes with Bacon.

To be fair, I think that these two were simply placed in the wrong category.  However, I wasn’t so sure about the Rice Croquettes that required 100 grams of ham(!).

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Oh well, I suppose I will have to keep looking.

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