Welcome to the world of herbs! Herbs play a significant role in Persian cuisine, whether they are served fresh as an appetizer with bread and cheese or cooked into Kuku or Khoresh (Persian stews).
Herbs are integrated into Persian dishes not only to brighten up the colors and bring a brilliant herbal taste, but also to create luscious and earthy sauces. Ghormeh sabzi, Saak, and Khoresht-e Karafs are good examples.
It’s not just a sprig of herbs, but rather bunches and bunches of them. Recently I visited a dear friend in London who asked me to explain what exactly is a bunch of herbs. In the US, herbs are sold both in small packages and as large bunches tied together. Here’s an example of what a “bunch of herbs” looks like. I actually counted them, and there are roughly 100 stems of parsley in this bunch!
- 4-5 eggs, see note
- 1 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro, leaves and softer section of the stem
- 1 cup coarsely chopped fresh parsley, leaves and softer section of the stem
- 1 cup coarsely chopped fresh dill, leaves and softer section of the stem
- 1 cup finely chopped chives, or scallions or leeks, mixture of green and white part for the scallion or leeks
- 1 tablespoon fenugreek leaves, dried
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric, ground
- 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper, ground
- 4 tablespoons walnuts, chopped
- 3 tablespoons barberries
- 1 teaspoon butter for greasing the pan
- Preheat the oven to 375º F.
- In a medium sized bowl, break the eggs and mix well with a whisk. Set aside.
- In a food processor, place small amounts of herbs and process until they are finely chopped.
- Repeat this process until all the herbs have been processed. Place in a large bowl.
- Add the remaining ingredients (with the exception of the butter) and whisked eggs to the herbs mixture and mix well.
- Rub a 9-inch pie dish or similar oven proof baking dish with butter and pour in the egg and herbs mixture.
- Bake uncovered for 30-40 minutes or until the eggs are fully cooked. Baking times will vary depending on your baking dish’s size and whether the mixture is spread out or more stacked.
- Allow the Kuku to rest for 5 minutes before removing it from the pan. Place on a serving platter and serve.
- Kuku Sabzi is often served with flat breads or steamed basmati rice and a side of yogurt.