Masgouf — an Iraqi speciality

Masgouf is a fish cooking technique very popular in Iraq, particularly in Baghdad. A big enough fish of the Cyprinidae family is de-gutted, split along the back, salted and woven onto stakes over an open wood fire for roasting. Today, it will be in most cases а common carp (Cyprinus carpio), a species introduced all around the globe. In times gone by, however, it would have been a native species of Cyprinidae. The picture below shows my mother admiring a good catch from the river Tigris in 1962 (it’s a motion-picture image survived by mere chance, so its quality is mediocre). Those were the days…

iraq tigris fishing

Dmitry Y. Balichev