The Mongolian barbecue is a stir-fried dish that was developed in Taiwanese restaurants in the 1970s. The meat and vegetables are cooked in large, round, solid iron pans with a handle at temperatures up to 300 ° C (572 ° F). Despite her name, the cuisine is not Mongolian and is only very loosely connected to the barbecue.
Although the Mongolian language grills barbecue, first appeared in Taipei in 1951, frying the movement of meat on a large, open surface is supposed to evoke Mongolian foods and Mongolian traditions. Preparation can also come from the Japanese teppanyaki style, which was popular in Taiwan at the time.
The very first Mongolian restaurant Barbecue (Mongolian BBQ Genghis Khan) was opened in 1976 and was located in the center of Taipei, Taiwan. As the Mongolian Barbecue became more popular, it was successfully introduced to the West.
American restaurants, such as the Mongolian HuHot Grill and the Mongolian BD Grill, claim that the soldiers of the Mongol Empire gathered large quantities of meat, prepared them with their swords and cooked them on their overturned shields over high fires.
A German restaurant chain, with the same concept, claims that Mongol soldiers cooked their food on a hot stone.
Typically, visitors select various ingredients from a display of thinly sliced raw meat (beef, pork, lamb, turkey, chicken, shrimp) and vegetables (cabbage, tofu, sliced onions, cilantro, broccoli, and mushrooms, pineapple, lychee), and place them in a bowl or on a plate.
These components are given to the operator of the pan with the handle, which adds the visitor’s choice of sauce and transfers them to one section of the hot pan with the handle. Oil and sometimes water can be added to ease cooking, and the ingredients are sometimes mixed.
The ample size of the Mongolian barbecue griddle allows several visitors to eat, which will be cooked simultaneously on different parts of the griddle.
Each dish will be stirred in turn, as the operator walks around outside the grill and turns the food of each individual visitor in turn. When the cooking is complete, each finished dish is dug in a bowl and served in a small restaurant. Many Mongolian barbecue restaurants feature an “everything you can eat” buffet format.
In Taiwan, many restaurants exist that specialize in Mongolian barbecue with additional buffet items available as well.
In the United States, a Mongolian barbecue is often found in American Chinese self-service restaurants, but some companies primarily focus on barbecues, such as the Mongolian HuHot Grill, Mongolian BD BBQ and Genghis Grill.
In Japan, a similar dish called the Mongolian barbecue (Mongolian language: Chinggis Khaan “Chingis Khaan”) rang, prepared with lamb and cooked in a convex metal skillet. The dish is especially popular on the northern island of Hokkaidō.
The dish is rumored to be so-called because, in pre-war Japan, the lamb was widely thought to be the preferred meat among Mongol soldiers, and the convex skillet is intended to represent the soldier’s helmets that they had previously prepared their food.