Sunday, June 5, 2016

Uyghur lamb skewers

I first came across Uyghur food during my post graduate university days. On a cold night, my boyfriend now hubby came across this small restaurant with the ceiling covered in the grapes and vine leaves diagonally opposite UTS Library. Sorry to say this place no longer exists. It was at that restaurant, I was introduced to the mouth numbing use of Sichuan pepper, braised and steamed dumplings, handmade noodles, the most tender lamb skewers and delicious chicken potato stew dish.

There are many Uyghur restaurants in Chinatown, Haymarket with their giant tapestries, plastic tablecloths, ceiling covered in vine leaves and cheap décor but the food is what people come here for time and time again.

So who or what is Uyghur you may say. The Uyghurs are a mainly Turkic people whose home is in Central Asia, between Kazakhstan and Mongolia, just north of Tibet in Xinjiang. They're one of more than 50 ethnic minorities in China and speak their own language, Uyghur.

The food is delicious and very comforting. With sciatic nerve issues with walking, it has been harder to go out for dinner so I thought I would try and bring Uyghur food to me with attempting the spice mix on the lamb kebabs that will have you salivating.

The spice mix hits it on the nail and is so good. I dare you try it for yourself.  These are perfect with the eggplant fattoush salad.


1 kg diced lamb (I've tried neck, leg which has worked a treat so far)

3 tbs cumin seeds
2 tbs fennel seeds
1 tbs chilli powder with seeds
1 tsp Sichuan peppercorns
2 tsp of powdered garlic
2 tsp salt

3 cloves of garlic
2cm knob of ginger


1. Place 20 skewers in water so these don't burn when you place these lamb skewers on the bbq.

2. Make the seasoning by pounding together, cumin seeds, fennel seeds, Sichuan peppercorns, chilli powder, powder garlic in a mortle and pestle and set aside.

3. Add garlic and ginger to the mortar and pestle and pound to a paste is formed.

3. Add the garlic and ginger paste with the powdered spices to massage the seasoning into the diced lamb.

4. Skewer the marinated lamb meat onto the skewers.

5. Put the skewers on the bbq grill and cook for 4 minutes and then turn them. Continue grilling until meat is cooked through, approximately 8-10mins in total.

6. Wait til they a slightly cooled and devour with salad.