Barley, legumes and herb soup with caramelized onion and garlic mint sauce

Aash-e Jow

آش جو

Aash-e Jow is a hearty Persian barley stew prepared by slowly cooking beans and grains with an abundance of fresh herbs and spinach. The stew is topped with the salty and tangy kashk (liquid whey), tender crispy fried onions, and a garlic mint sauce. Aash can be served either as the main course or as a side dish. When I’m in a hurry and eager to have this stew, I sometimes use good quality canned beans to get to it faster!

Aash-e Jow

Barley, legumes and herb soup with caramelized onion and garlic mint sauce 
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time50 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: Persian
Keyword: barley, herbs, kashk, Legumes
Servings: 6 people
Author: Omid Roustaei – The Caspian Chef


  • 1 large onion diced
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon salt or more to taste
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • ½ cup white basmati rice
  • 1 cup pearled barley
  • ½ cup lentils
  • 5-6 cups of chicken or vegetable broth
  • 14 oz. canned garbanzo beans rinsed
  • 14 oz. canned red kidney bean rinsed
  • 2 cups fresh parsley chopped
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro chopped
  • 1 cup fresh dill chopped
  • 2 cups fresh spinach chopped
  • 1 cup kashk liquid whey or can substitute sour cream


  • 4 tablespoons olive oil or ghee
  • 1 onion thinly sliced
  • 6 cloves of garlic thinly sliced
  • ½ cup chopped fresh mint leaves or 2 tablespoons dried
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric


  • In a large pot, sauté the onions with olive oil for about 5 minutes. Add garlic, salt, pepper, cumin, coriander, turmeric and sauté for an additional minute before adding the rice, barley, and lentils. Make sure the mixture is completely coated with oil and the spices, pour in the broth, stir and bring to a gentle boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover and simmer for about 30 minutes or until the grain and lentils are cooked.
  • Prepare the garnish by heating the oil in a skillet over medium heat and saute the onion for about 10 minutes before adding the rest of the ingredients. Saute for 2 more minutes and set aside.
  • Add the garbanzo beans, kidney beans, parsley, cilantro, dill and spinach to the pot. (The herbs and the spinach can be quickly processed in a food processor).
  • Cover and simmer over low heat for 15 minutes. Stir in the kashk/sour cream and remove from the heat. Pour the soup into a bowl and garnish with the garlic mint sauce. Serve hot.


Eliminate the liquid whey and replace the chicken broth with vegetable stock to create a vegan/vegetarian option.

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