Week 37. Turkmenistan. Ishlekly.

I admit it. I have savaged the main photo with photoshop. Savaged it!  Why? Because the dish looked like crap. It sagged, it slopped and I was far too tired to resolve the situation. I have (not asking for any sympathy) driven 280 miles today, ran on a beach, lunched in Bath and visited three of the best Service Station Toilets this country has to offer. As a result, and with a 5:30am start tomorrow (again I’m not complaining) the cook tonight was a bit of a blur. I drew Turkmenistan this week and loved the idea of this dish. A pastry with effectively a huge burger in the middle of it.

I write tonight in April in the UK. I am sunburned and this is VERY unusual for this time of year. I claim that this is because I have Olive Skin, but the reality is that it is never this hot at this time of year and my skin, fresh from a 6 month winter, was as sensitive as a Salmon Skin on a Griddle. On my race back today from Wales I asked my wife to look up any dishes from Turkmenistan which I might be able to make with a 5 minute shop on the way home. She came up with Ishlekly and it was fun to make for sure. Basically you make a pastry (with more care than I did in my rush) and add a mix of beef, onion and tomato (seasoned) to the centre (250g beef, 2 onions, 1 can tinned tomatoes). Add a pastry disk to the top and turn it into a pie. Cover in a glaze of butter and bake for 40 mins. If you have made your pastry better than I, you have a fantastic pie which is delicious with salad.

I feel dreadful that I have learned no more about Turkmenistan than it is a former Soviet State which is bordered by Afghanistan and Turkey. For once I am not on top of things. I massively blame the Welsh sun…it is stunning…but hurts and I think my sunburn has damaged my organization skills.

Finally – the reason for me being in Wales this weekend was for the Wedding of Charlie and Sally I’Anson. Your wedding was incredible. Sally you looked incredible and Charlie your speech was more than wow. Much love.

The stages of the pie are below!


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2 thoughts on “Week 37. Turkmenistan. Ishlekly.

  1. Did you use wholemeal flour in the pastry? Did the recipe ask for that or was that just your decision. Despite the photos it does look like good comfort food. Good for a day when you’re feeling sorry for yourself for being tired and sunburnt

    • That was all me. Nothing to do with the fact that I ran out of plain flour half way through so had to do a 50/50%. Nothing to do with that

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