Having read an article yesterday slating Mongolian food as the “most disgusting food in the world’, we wanted to find out for ourselves whether this was true or not, hoping what was written to be rubbish. This evening we had our first taste of Mongolian cuisine with a group of friends, yet while still being in the comfort of London, albeit South London. The article went on to saying statements like “nothing prepared me for the culinary horrors of Mongolia” and “the problem with Mongolian “cheese” is that it is nearly as hard as rock and as acidic as battery acid. Eating it is not horrific, but it is rather exhausting”. We can firmly say that our first Mongolian culinary experience was none of the above, but full of fiery flavours created from the peppery chillies used in that part of the world…they were HOT! I have no idea what food the individual writing that article had but it wasn’t horrifying in the slightest! Or maybe we are yet to try true Mongolian food?
The Mongolian Grill had a happy atmosphere, and was only added to by the wonderful manager Wongie who shared facts about the where the flavours/spices came from and passed on warnings of the heat from the chillies. We all had the Mongolian Hotpots, and as soon as they were simmering away you could feel the air fill with spice. To give you an idea of the level of spice, a couple of us past chemists had a sense of déjà vu of when one of us on going on the trip, naming no names, got a lab evacuated for flooding the lab with raw capscine (chilli) fumes, which later resulted in burning eyes and prickly feeling skin. What fun times they were, haha. The hotpots basically consist of a stock, which could be mild, hot, super-hot or super-super-hot. While none of us tried the super-super-hot, the super-hot was already mind-blowing. We then cooked vegetables and meat in the stock ourselves and feasted for a couple of hours. We definitely all over ate, but it was worth it as the food was delicious and the company was great.
The suspense of the culinary delights of being on the road through so many countries is definitely intriguing us already, I am sure there are going to be some pleasantly surprised moments as well as the gut-wrenching ones… which is all part of the fun and something we can look forward to!