Lords of the Drinks

Ashlyam Fu, a Cold Soup from Kyrgyzstan that Cures Hangovers


Ashlyan Fu, a typical dish from Kyrgyzstan that cures hangovers.

We already gave you some tips and tricks to get rid of your hangover. But every country has its own traditional dishes to make the process go faster. We like to give you a taste of the international anti-hangover cuisine. Today we travel to the fairly unknown country of Kyrgyzstan, a mountainous place that used to be crossed by the silk route. We already mentioned the Kyrgyz in our post about the fermented horse milk known as kumis, but as they were part of the Soviet Union until 1991 they know their vodka too. Their hangover food is a cold soup called Ashlyan Fu and it’s a well kept secret in the Western World. As far as we could find this is the only recipe written in English you’ll find on the internet, as this one was translated from Russian. They say you either love it or hate it, but there’s only one way to find out: try it!

Although Ashlyan Fu is pretty unknown in the rest of the world it’s pretty popular in most of the “Stan-countries” that lay between Russia and China. You can find this hangover soup on the menu in restaurants in Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Tadjikistan, but it’s commonly accepted that the best Ashlyan Fu comes from Kyrgyzstan. It can be pretty spicy and sour, while you also rehydrate yourself and get the much needed fat, salt and veggies to cure a hangover. Now you just have to decide if you actually like the dish or it’s a necessary evil.

280 grams corn starch
5 liter water
30 gram salt
200 ml sunflower oil
1 tablespoon sugar
6 pieces of star anise
20 gram ginger
10 cloves
5 tablespoons vinegar
2 bell peppers
100 gram green celery
1,5 onions
1,5 carrots
10 gram powdered chile pepper
15 gram tomato paste
3 egg yolks
Powdered black pepper
Powdered white powder
Grinded red pepper
1 kg noodles
10 chicken eggs
5 cucumbers
5 tomatoes
100 gram adjika

Take a bowl and dilute 280 grams of corn starch in 500 ml water and add 10 grams of salt. Stir with a wooden spoon till there are no lumbs left. Now take a normal sized pan and boil 1,5 liter water and add 10 grams of salt and 2 table spoons of sunflower oil. Then add the corn starch mix from your bowl. Boil everything over a hot fire while constantly stirring for about 8 minutes. Then reduce the hit, cover your pan with a lid and let it simmer for 20 minutes.
Now take a wok pan and heat up 2 tablespoons of sunflower oil. When the oil is hot add a tablespoon of sugar and let it caramelize. Then little by little add half a liter to a liter of water, while you keep stirring. Peel, slice and crush the ginger and add it to the wok, along with the star anise. Let the whole thing cook for a minute. Then add 10 cloves and 2 tablespoons of vinegar. Cook and allow it to cool afterwards.
Clean the wok for the 3rd part of this meal and heat up 2 tablespoons of sunflower heat. Chop your 1,5 onion and fry them in the wok. Thinly slice or grate the carrots and add them to the wok. Add the powdered chile pepper and tomato paste and then some water while you stir. Chop the bell peppers and add them to the mix. Let them fry a little while you stir and put in the chopped green celery and half a tablespoon of salt. After that you add 3 tablespoons of vinegar. After that you pour in a little water and add black, white and red pepper to taste. Add 2,5 liters of water and bring to a boil.
Meanwhile you take your other pan. For the solification of the starch you pour your mixture in small bowls and let them cool for the night.
And it’s back to your vegetables in the wok. Once properly cooked you can add the 3 egg yolks and stir. Slightly cook the mixture and take it off the fire to cool.
The next day you make an omelette out of the 10 eggs and cut it into strings. Meanwhile cook the noodles as instructed on the package, slice the cucumbers and tomatoes and cut up the starch that should now be solid. Now put the noodles and starch in a bowl and the vegetable soup on top of that. Next you add the vinegar mixture and last you top the bowl off with slices of tomato, cucumber and omelette and a little adjika. Time to enjoy your Kyrgyz hangover dish.

Micky Bumbar