Xinjiang people are proud of their Baked Mutton Kebabs. Kebabs can be found in the streets and bazaars throughout Xinjiang. Chunks of mutton are strung on a skewer and roasted over charcoal. The kebabs are turned continually, and when they are almost done, salt, pepper and other seasonings are sprinkled on them. Kebabs look crispy outside but are tender, slightly salty and hot. The seasonings can be different due to personal requirement.
Lamian Noodles or Hand-pulled Noodles are a very popular dish throughout Northwest China, especially in the Hui ethnic community. Chefs stretch and double a single lump of noodle dough several times in succession to create very thin strings noodles. Lamian Noodles can be served with beef or mutton either in soup or stir-fried. Caraway is the most common herb when Lamian Noodle is served in soup and is regarded as indispensable.
Grilled Whole Lamb
Grilled Whole Lamb is the most famous food found in Urumqi. Migrants from Xinjiang have made the food well-known throughout China but the most authentic grilled whole lamb still remains in Xinjiang, mostly in Urumqi. The food is prepared with selected ingredients and a special cooking technique.
The skillful chef first select a 2-year-old fat lamb. A mixture of flour and water with yelk, salt, ginger, pepper powder will be applied to shroud the whole carcass. Put the lamb into a specially-made oven and baked for around 1 hour.
It is trimmed with red silk around its neck and served with it mouth stuffed with fresh caraway.
Rice Taken by Hands
Rice Taken by Hands is a popular food at festivals. The main materials are fresh mutton, carrots, onions, vegetables, rice and raisins. Raisins are boiled with sliced onions, carrots and small cubes of fried beef. Rice is then added and boiled again. The ingredients are streamed for twenty minutes and then served. Before eating, one washes one's hands three times and dries them with handkerchiefs. Sitting cross-legged on cushions, people serve the rice on plates and it is then eaten with the hand.
There are more than 10 kinds of this rice dish using mutton, chicken and vegetarian, but the most common is one mutton.
Explore Xinjiang with China Highlights
Today the Silk Road still tells many stories of ancient times and the exchange of cultures. Take a tour to discover the history and culture of the Silk Road. See our Silk Road tour designs for inspiration (they can all be customized):
- Along the Great Silk Road - Our 11-Day Xi'an, Zhangye, Dunhuang, Turpan, Urumqi, and Kashgar tour is the most selected Silk Road itinerary.
- 7-Day Xinjiang Silk Road Highlights Tour
For something significantly different, we would be glad to tailor-make a Silk Road tour for you.