Thanks to Shanie Reichman who sent me her grandmother’s recipe.
Zhargo is also a traditional Nashdidan dish. As with most of the foods we ate, it was served over white rice. My grandmother never bought bags of potatoes. She bought only the best Idaho potatoes. Any dark spots were cut off and discarded. This dish requires a bit of patience for the meat to braise slowly in its own juices, adding very little water as necessary.
Zhargo (meat and potatoes)
- Marinate meat overnight in sliced onions.
- Put 1/3 cup of oil in a deep sauté pan or wide pot.
- Add meat with the onions to the pot.
- Cover pot and cook on medium heat for 20 minutes. Then on low heat.
- Stir periodically. The meat will give off liquid. Make sure there is liquid in the pot at all times so it does not dry out. Can add a few Tbsp of boiling water if it’s dry.
- In a separate pot, place the potatoes with 1/4 cup of oil, 1/4 tsp turmeric, 1/8 tsp black pepper, and 2 cups of boiling water.
- Cook potatoes on medium- high flame for 30 -40 minutes until cooked but still in pieces.
- Liquid will thicken and be a bit creamy. If adding liquid to meat, can add from the potato liquid.
- Add 1/4 tsp pepper and 1 1/2 tsp salt to the potatoes.
- Cook meat 1 1/4 hours then add 4 ladles of potato liquid to it.
- Cook until meat is soft enough to cut with a fork.
- Add potatoes with their liquid to the meat.
- Adjust seasoning.
- Cook 15 more minutes until creamy. Texture will be creamier the next day. Makes 8 main course servings.