Khorkhog (Mongolian: Xopxoг) is a barbecue dish in Mongolian cuisine. Khorkhog (horhog) is made by cooking pieces of meat inside a container which also contains hot stones and water, and is often also heated from the outside.
To make khorkhog, Mongolians take lamb (goat meat can be substituted) and cut it into pieces of convenient size, leaving the bone. Then the cook puts ten to twenty fist-sized rocks in a fire. When the rocks are hot enough, the rocks and the meat are placed in the chosen cooking container. Metal milk jugs are a traditional choice, although any container sturdy enough to hold the hot rocks will serve.
The cook adds other ingredients as desired (carrots, cabbage, potatoes) to make a stew, then adds salt and other spices. The ingredients should be layered, with the vegetables on top. Finally the cook pours in a sufficient quantity of water to create a steam bubble inside the jug, which he then closes with a lid.
The heat of the stones and the steam will cook the meat inside the jug. The cook can also put the jug on a fire or the stove if the stones are not hot enough. The stones will turn black from the heat and the fat they absorb from the lamb. The jug should remain covered while the cook listens to and smells the meal to judge when it is ready. The stones can take up to an hour and a half to cook the meat sufficiently. When finished, the khorkhog is ready to eat. The cook hands out portions of meat along with the hot stones which are tossed from hand to hand and are said to have beneficial properties. Diners usually eat khorkhog with their fingers, although one can use a knife to slice the meat off the bone.
Khorkhog is a popular dish in the Mongolian countryside, but usually is not served in restaurants.
- Thrift, Eric (2001). The cultural heritage of Mongolia. Naranbulag printing.
- Sanders, Alan J.K.; J. Bat-Ireedui (1995). Mongolian phrasebook. Lonely Planet. p. 99. ISBN 978-0-86442-308-5. Retrieved 11 December 2010.
- e-Mongol.com - Culture of Mongolia : cooking recipes
- Khorkhog - Meat cooked with hot stones - Mongolian Recipes
- Vicariously.Through.Me: A Khourhog For Me :-)
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