Anar Bij – Meatballs in pomegranate and herb sauce

Anar Bij is a hearty and flavor-packed dish from Gilan province in the Caspian Sea region of Iran. Delicate meatballs are gently cooked in a creamy walnut sauce that is then flavored with fresh herbs and pomegranate molasses. Tart flavors, aromatics, and a hint of sweetness combine to make this dish another poster child of…

Shami – Herb and meat patties

Shami is often referred to as a meat patty, though realistically it is more about herbs and ground walnuts than it is about the meat. Throughout Iran, you will find a multitude of Shami varieties using different types of meat, often with added chickpeas, yellow split peas, or red lentils. This version from the Caspian…

Dolmeh Barg Mo – Stuffed grape leaves

Stuffed grape leaves are a well-recognized and popular dish in the Mediterranean and Middle Eastern regions. Iranians, Turks, Syrians, Armenians, Lebanese, Greeks, and Iraqis have been making them since about the 17th century, albeit with many variations in the name, choice of ingredients, flavor profile, and presentation. Dolmeh (Farsi), Dolma (Turkish), Dolmades (Greek) You are…

Kuku Gerdu – Walnut and herb frittata

You say frittata: I say Kuku; you say (Spanish) tortilla: I say K . . . and we are saying the same thing – almost! It is actually a stretch to call this dish a frittata or a tortilla, but I don’t know a better comparison. Kuku is an Iranian egg-based dish that combines vegetables,…

Kabob Kubideh – Grilled skewered Kebab

However you spell or pronounce them, Kebabs, Kebobs, or Kababs are meat dishes that take pride of place alongside other dishes in Persian cuisine. They are typically small pieces of seasoned whole or ground beef, lamb, chicken, or seafood that are generally skewered and grilled. Mention “Ka-bob” (the Farsi pronunciation) to an Iranian, and it…

Hope, Respect, and Honor: What It Looks Like to Celebrate Nowruz, the Persian New Year

I’m thrilled to announce that I have joined The KITCHN team as a freelance contributor and my first 2 articles relating to Nowruz, the Persian New Year and a traditional Nowruz dish, Sabzi Polo are now posted.

Join me for Tea and Conversation: Persian Culinary Traditions for Nowruz

Date: Wednesday, March 17, 2021, 6 – 7 pm EST, 3 -4 pm Pacific Time Nowruz, the Persian New Year, marks the arrival of spring across large parts of the Middle East and Central Asia. Feasts that accompany Nowruz are central to the celebration. Join Omid Roustaei, a Seattle-based Persian chef, to learn about special…

Mella Ghormeh – Eggplant with herbs and poached eggs

Mella Ghormeh is a signature dish from the Caspian Sea region of Iran that celebrates the region’s abundance of local produce while bringing a depth of flavor into a simple dish. In many regions of Iran, there is a heavy reliance on a medley of spices. However, many Northern Iranian dishes rely on simpler fresh,…

Sabzi Polo ba Mahi – Herbed rice pilaf with fish

Sabzi Polo is one of the more popular herb-rice mixture dishes in Persian cuisine, known not only for its use of abundant fresh herbs but also for its close ties to the Persian New Year celebration, Nowruz. Iranian’s obsession with herbs in large quantities, fresh or dried, is no secret. You will find many dishes…

Gishneez Polo – Cilantro rice pilaf

Iranian’s obsession with herbs in large quantities, fresh or dried, is no secret. You will find many dishes – ranging from yogurt, to stews, to soups and rice dishes – that incorporate at least one or more often a whole medley of herbs. Gishneez polo is a slightly lesser-known version of the more popular herb…