Lamprey stew – made with lamprey eels – is an unusual dish, whose main ingredient is an ancient, oft-forgotten fish, one of many rare foods used regularly by Alihaydar Mammadov, of the Slow Food Cook’s Alliance in Azerbaijan.
The lamprey used here is also an Ark of Taste ingredient, caught only seasonally, at the end of winter in lower part of the Kura River which crosses the country from north to south-east before reaching the Caspian Sea at the city of Neftçala. The fish is flavored with parsley, tomatoes and Ismailli garlic (another Ark of Taste product), characterized by a discreet but persistent aroma and an intense flavor. Before cooking is finished a generous quantity of abgora is added to the stew, a traditional condiment made from grapes which is used to balance the fatty ingredients of the dish with its acidity, as well as making digestion easier.
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