22 Jul


Qubuli Uzbaki or kabuli pulao is the national dish of Afganistan. Afghani Pulao is a savory Central Asian dish that has many variations. It is often prepared with cauliflower, cabbage, carrots and various kinds of nuts. Traditionally cooked with large pieces of lamb, Kabuli Pulao is equally delicious when made with beef. There is even a vegetarian version that substitutes meat with stew-style vegetables. This is a healthy and hearty dish that works just as well in the summers as in winters. The combination of textures, colors and nutritional value make this a popular dish that can be had as a complete meal.

Like most Indians i  love the Indianized version of Biryanis – the Mughlai Biryani which is rich in spices and is more elaborate a process than its Afghani version. I was uncertain weather or not I should try this version of the Pulao which seemed so simple. It sounded as simple as saudi kabsa   as the recipe hardly had any spices. And iam not a big fan of kabsa.  The source of flavour in which case would be carrots, raisins along with the stock of the mutton. and i dont like raisins with rice. so i tweaked the recipie just slightly. I add coriander and mint leaves ( for me their is no biryani without this aromatic herbs)

But when i made it , liked it so much. Definately going to make it again. I urge you to try it, you wont be disappointed. On the contrary you will be surprised at how such subtle flavours are brought out in this delectable one pot meal. It can be your favourite source of Carbohydrates made the healthier way (make this wholly with 5 tsp Olive oil!). If you have unexpected guests, fussy eaters, those who don’t like spicy heavy duty rice preparations or just crave for some Biryani/Pulao on a lazy Sunday without having to toil too much in your kitchen (you can cook the meat in the cooker!), this is your best bet!

serves 4         cooking time : nearly an hour


  • Lamb/ beef / camel meat – 500 grms
  • Basmati rice – 3 cups
  • Onion – 2 large, diced
  • Garam Masala (spice blend: ground peppercorns, cloves, cinnamon, cardamom) – 1 tsp
  • Saffron – ½ tsp
  • Cumin powder – ½ tbsp
  • Salt – 1 tsp
  • Carrots – 2, julienned (sliced) thin vertical slices
  • Yellow raisins – 1 cup
  • Almonds – ½ cup, blanched
  • Pistachios – ½ cup, blanched
  • olive oil – ½ cup
  • Water

additional ingredients for indian taste buds……..

  • 1/2  cup green paste – coriander , mint leaves, 3 green chillies
  • 1 tsp chilli powder



Wash and Soak rice in water in a big pot and keep aside.

Heat half of the oil in a heavy large skillet and fry onions until golden brown. Add meat pieces to the fried onion and cook until light brown on both sides. Add salt, garam masala ,chilli powder  and the green paste and saffron and fry the meat until the oil separates and rises to the top. Add  2 glasses water and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer covered until meat is tender. Add more water if required.

Or you can pressure cook it like i did. I was using camel meat , so i pressure cooked it for 15 whistles…..that is nearly 20 minutes on medium heat.

In a separate pan, sauté carrots in a small quantity of oil  and fry until softened. Remove from pan and keep aside. In the same pan sauté raisins until they swell up. Remove from pan and set aside. Next fry the almonds and pistachios to a golden brown and set aside.

When meat is cooked, remove it from the remaining water/stock with a slotted spoon and set aside. Add rice and salt to the stock, add broth and cook until the liquid comes to a boil. Lower the heat and cook covered until rice is done and dry (about 15-20 minutes). Alternatively, once the water dries up to about 70% of its original quantity, the pan may be placed in a preheated oven at 300 degrees Fahrenheit for 15-20 minutes.

or  Cover the pan with 2 sheets of aluminium foil and then a lid which covers the mouth of the pan completely. Keep a weight on top of it , so that the steam may not escape.  Cook for 15minutes on very slow flame and turn off the flame and leave it unopened  for another 5-6 minutes.

To serve, cover base of a platter with a little rice, spoon over the lamb and then cover with remaining rice. Top with spiced carrot, then scatter with almonds and pistachios. Serve hot with raita or as such.


Camel meat is often available in many gulf countries. I tasted it 3 years back when my husband bought home dinner from a Afgan restuarant. Since then hooked to it. It taste almost similar to lamp , if the meat is tender and properly cooked. Though it has a slight salty taste, so you might adjust salt while you are cooking. The best part of the meat is the white meat from the hump , which is fatty but so delicious and melt in the mouth. The brisket, ribs and loin are among the preferred parts, and the hump is considered a delicacy.

Camel meat considered to be a major source of protein, which contains a small percentage of cholesterol, for that reason many doctors advises patients who suffer from heart disease to eat camel meat.

The camel meat contains 860 calories per kilo while per kilo of sheep meat have 2380 calories and that makes a good benefit for a dieter as a way of avoiding 1520 extra calories that can effect negatively on him/her diet.

Camel meat has been eaten for centuries. It has been recorded by ancient Greek writers as an available dish in ancient Persia at banquets, usually roasted whole.[100] The ancient Roman emperor Heliogabalus enjoyed camel’s heel.[32] Camel meat is still eaten in certain regions, including Somalia, Djibouti, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Libya, Sudan, Kazakhstan, and other arid regions where alternative forms of protein may be limited or where camel meat has had a long cultural history.[14][32][95] Camel blood is also consumable, as is the case among pastoralists in northern Kenya, where camel blood is drunk with milk and acts as a key source of iron, vitamin D, salts and minerals.[14][95][101] Camel meat is also occasionally found in Australian cuisine.




Thank you for visiting my space. I love to hear from you. Your comments are really appreciated…





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