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Mansaf

 
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A homecooked Mansaf, Amman, Jordan
 
Yogurt/cream fresh (mixed) 800/800 g
Clarified unsalted butter             10 tbsp
Lamb (meat and ribs) 1 kg
Pieces and trimmed of excess fat 200 g
Baharat 2 tbsp
long-grain rice 3 cups
Salt 1 tbsp
Pine nuts 1/2 cup
Boiling water 3-4 cups
Blanched whole almonds 1/2 cup
Tahini 2 tbsp
Flat bread 2 pieces
 
  • In a largecasserole heat 5 tablespoons of the clarified butter over medium heat,

  • Then cook the lamb until browned on all sides, about 20 minutes. Remove the meat from the casserole with a slotted spoon and set aside;

  • Pour off all the excess fat and liquid;

  • Return the meat to the casserole addthree-quarters of yogurt and cream fresh mix, reduce the heat to low, sprinkle on the bahārāt, addsalt tothe meat to taste. Stir the meat so it is mixed well with the spices and yogurt;

  • Cook uncovered, until the meat is falling off the bone, about 3 hours;

Prepare the rice:

  • Soak ricein water for 30 minutes thandrain or rinsed well under running water until the water runs clear;

  • In a casserole or pot with a lid, melt 3 tablespoons of the clarified butter over medium-high heat;

  • Cook the rice for 2 minutes, stirring;

  • Pour in 3 cups of the boiling water and the salt, bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook until the rice is tender and all the liquid is absorbed, about 20 minutes; Do not lift the lid to look at the rice and do not stir the rice as it cooks. After 20 minutes, if the rice is not done, keep adding boiling water in small amounts until the rice has absorbed the additional water and is tender;

  • When the rice is done, stir in the remaining yogurt, to make the rice a little watery.

Meanwhile

  • Melt 1 tablespoon clarified butter in a small skillet and cook, shaking the skillet, until the butter is golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove and set the butter aside;

  • Melt the remaining tablespoon clarified butter in the small skillet and cook the almonds until light golden, about 5 minutes, tossing the nuts. Add the pine nuts and cook until they are golden, about another 3 minutes. Set the nuts aside.

To serve:

  • Prepare very large tray or serving platter;

  • Arrange the bread directly on the table or tray, overlapping them some, and spread some saucefrom the cooked lamb on it so it becomes soft;

  • Strain the meat and place it over the bread, now soft and broken;

  • Spoon the rice over next and put the remaining sauce from the lamb in a separate bowl with a serving spoon;

  • Sprinkle the pine nuts and almonds over the rice;

  • Pour the reserved 1 tablespoon of melted samna over everything;

 

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