Tashkent is the capital of Uzbekistan, one of the former USSR countries. According to one version this salad was created in Moscow during USSR times, when Soviet government set the task to popularize the various national cuisines of the Soviet Union. Due to a very limited availability of the ingredients in most parts of the USSR, Soviet cuisine can be characterized as simple. So, the salad also had to be simple, tasty and nourishing. Another version says that the salad was created by chef of the “Tashkent” restaurant in Moscow, where it also was served for the first time.
Main ingredients are boiled beef and green radish, sounds simple but believe me the salad will be very tasty! Unhealthy side is dressing, because it’s mayonnaise. So, I suggest to make and eat this salad during weekend, or serve it for a special occasion and everyone will certainly be in awe. 😉 You can also substitute mayo with sour cream, but the taste will be slightly different. Another option for dressing is flavorful sunflower oil, that sometimes mixed with a teaspoon of vinegar. Chose the option and enjoy the salad!
400-500g beef fillet
800-900g green radish (I used daikon/Chinese white radish)
4 eggs, hard-boiled
1 large brown onion
2 tbsp sunflower oil for frying
100-150g mayonnaise for dressing (or sour cream/sunflower oil)
fresh chopped coriander or parsely for serving, optional
pomegranate seeds for serving, optional
salt, black pepper to taste
- In a large pan, put the raw meat, cover with cold water, season with salt. Bring to boil, remove the foam, reduce the heat to medium, and simmer for 50-60 minutes. Optionally, you can add few peppercorns, bay leaf, small onion to get aromatic stock which you can use later. Cool the meat, then cut into julienne (thin strips).
- Cut eggs into thin strips. Optionally, instead of cutting eggs into strips you can cut them into 4 wedges and garnish the salad.
- Cut radish into julienne. Sprinkle radish with salt and let stand for 15 minutes, drain the liquid. If you are using green radish, cover it with cold water and leave for 1 hour to get rid of bitterness; then drain the water.
- Thinly slice the onion into half-moon. Heat the oil and fry the onion until golden-brown.
- In a large serving bowl, mix radish with onion, add beef, season with salt and pepper. Carefully stir in eggs and dress with mayonnaise. Garnish with coriander/parsley and pomegranate seeds.