Khorkhog is one of the most famous traditional dishes from Mongolia. Very often called ¨Mongolian barbecue¨. This dish is made by slow-cooking mutton meat inside a container filled with water and hot stones. The heat of the rocks and the steam created inside the container cook the meat for over an hour and a half. Veggies are optional but not common. Usually potatoes, carrots and cabbage. The way you need to layer the meat, rocks and veggies is a key part of the preparation of the dish. First, you need to add the meat that takes a long time to cook, like the legs. Then you add some rocks. Then you add the meat that cooks quicker, like the ribs. After that, you add more stones. And keep repeating the process: first meat, then rocks, repeat. After all the meat is in, you add the veggies on top, if you want any.


Khorkhog is delicious! I had the chance to try it while visiting a nomad family, and I loved it. If you can try it, go for it because this dish is quite hard to find in restaurants. Maybe that’s because Mongolians tend to eat it on special occasions. For example, if someone special is visiting or when celebrating the first hair-cutting ceremony, an important Mongolian tradition is about cutting a child’s hair for the first time.

If you want to be extra traditional while eating Khorkhog, after taking the hot rocks out, pass the stones from one hand to another. Apparently, some Mongolians say it improves blood circulation.

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