~HOW TO MAKE LIQUID SAFFRON~
liquified saffron is essential to Persian cooking. You will use it in rice dishes, Khoresht and for deserts and even in your chai. It gives Persian food its unique and subtle flavour and sets it apart. I always keep my saffron in an airtight container in a dark cupboard to ensure its rich yellow colour and to avoid it loosing any of its strength of flavour. saffron is very expensive to buy so you want to take care of it. I personally only buy Persian saffron because I know its good quality and I’ll get the results and taste I want. Spanish saffron is widely available in the UK and I buy this only if I run out ( which almost never happens ).
- Take a really good pinch or of saffron and place it in a pestle and mortar, add a tiny pinch of sugar or salt ( use which ever will suit your recipe) and grind. I use a pestle and mortar but many people use small food processor and powder up bulk batches of saffron strands at a time .
- Place the ground or powdery saffron in cup and add a little boiling water and stir and then cover and allow to infuse for at least 30 minutes. The longer you leave it, the richer the color.
Once you’ve made liquid saffron you can keep it in the fridge for about 2-3 days, but remember to cover it with cling film or keep in an air tight container!
Fact: Saffron is said to help ward off mild depressive thinking. I dont know how true this is but just the colour alone makes you think of sunshine and that makes me smile 🙂
Faloodeh is an experience you will never regret. It has its roots back in ancient Persia and is particularly associated with Shiraz. With a consistency of something between a slush puppy and sorbet, it’s memorable because of the rice noodles and refreshingly delicious due to the sweetness of the rose-water and sourness of the limes . The combination of these three ingredients makes it distinctive and fairly unique to Iran. I’ve never come across any one who doesn’t love it at first bite. …..
This is my recipe for Faloodeh, you will no doubt find other versions but this is easy. Add lime or lemon juice, it works well with the sweetness of the rose-water and add sour cherry syrup, pistachios and mint to garnish. Perfect desert for any time of the year and delightfully refreshing in the summer months!
Faloodeh – Rice Noodle Sorbet
~Recipe for use with an ice cream maker or by hand ~
- 2 cups of caster sugar
- 1 cup of water
- 1/2 cup of rose-water
- 1 Vietnamese rice noodles (vermicelli) broken into 2 inch pieces.
garnish: pistachios, sour cherry syrup, any berries, fresh lime juice and lime wedges.
- Boil the rice noodles in boiling water for 20 seconds (or according to instructions) and no more or they will be too mushy.
- Remove the noodles from the pan, rinse under cold water and put to one side.
- Place the sugar and water into a pan and bring to the point just before it boils.
- Remove the pan from the heat and add the rose-water and set aside.
- Allow it to cool off completely.
- Pour this mixture into an ice cream maker and turn it on. Allow it begin to set then add half of the noodles and then follow the same process again.
- Set the Ice cream maker to ‘sorbet’ setting, turn on and relax !
- OR combine the mix as above, place in a bowl and allow to begun to set in the freezer. After about an hour, remove from the freezer and gently using a fork, disturb the setting process and then place back in the freezer and repeat a few times until you’re happy with the consistency.
For garnish: Traditional: Lime juice , mint, and pistachios. As an alternative try sour cherry syrup juice, Mango syrup or any seasonal berries raspberries are delicious or mango and strawberries, blueberries or any fruit you fancy.
Nooshi joonet ~ you’re going to enjoy this !
BEFARMAID SHAM click here
Dear friends I know that you are probably all familiar with the TV show COME DINE WITH ME. MANOTO TV has made a series in farsi. The show is all in farsi language and Im afraid there aren’t any english subtitles but you might still enjoy them and you can watch some of the dishes being prepared.
I hope you enjoy. Happy viewing 🙂
PUMPKIN AND SWEET POTATOE SOUP
There’s nothing more satisfying than a bowl of soup on these cold wintery days. Pumpkins are seasonal so we have to make good use of them while we can!! Today I wanted to experiment a little and thought I spice up my usual pumpkin soup recipe and persianise it! So here it is. It’s very easy to make. There are no hard and fast rules about ingredients or measurements of, it’s very relaxed and delicious. Hope you enjoy.
~ INGREDIENTS ~
- 1/2 pumpkin seeded and cubed.
- 1 Large onion diced
- 2 Sweet potatoes peeled and chopped.
- 3-4 Garlic cloves diced.
- 1 Red pepper seeded.
- 1/2 cup of liquid saffron.
- 1/2 stock ( I used chicken stock but what ever you have is good)
- salt and pepper to taste.
- 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon of advieh
- 1 dried lime.
- Place the oven on about 200 degrees. Brush the peppers with a little olive oil and bake until the skin begins to blacken. Remove from the oven and place the peppers in a plastic bag. Put aside to cool.
- Using a little oil, fry the onions and garlic until it begins to turn golden.
- Add the cubed pumpkin and sweet potatoe, salt, pepper, turmeric, the saffron, chicken stock and the dried lime. If you haven’t got dried limes, use lime juice or powdered lime.
- Pour enough hot water on to cover the vegetables and leave to simmer until the veg is soft, usually around 20 mins.
- Go back to your peppers and peel the skin off.
- If you want smooth soup, blend everything together. If you like your soup lumpy just chop the red pepper flesh as small as possible and add.
Hey presto ….. a delicious sweet and sour soup, warming and thoroughly nutritious. Garnish with chopped corriander. Just what you need on a damp winters day. Eat now, serve for supper or take it for lunch the next day. BTW it freezes well too.
~Nooshi joonet ~
I just love persian ‘Dolmeh’ and the recipe is well overdue here on my Persian food blog. So here it is, inspired by my dear friend Haroot far away in Tehran and I just wish he was here to enjoy it with me!
This is the basic recipe to use with peppers, aubergine, tomatoes or large onions and will serve approx 2-3 servings. It takes around an hour to prepare and 2 hours to cook.
- 2 peppers
- 2 aubergines
- 2 tomatoes
- 1 courgette
- 1/2 cup rice ( I used Thai but any is good)
- 1/3 cup of split yellow peas.
- 1 lb of minced beef
- 1 large onion chopped
- 1 cup of chopped parsley ( jafari )
- 1/2 chopped chives (tareh)
- 1 cup of chopped mint (nanar )
- 1 cup of chopped tarragon (tarhoon )
- 1 cup of chopped dill (shivid)
- 1/2 teaspoon of saffron dissolved in 1/2 cup of hot water
- 2 tablespoons of tomatoe paste
- 3/4 spoon of advieh
- 1 cup of tomatoe juice
- 1/2 cup of ghooreh or lime juice
- 3/4 cup of sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
- salt and pepper
- olive oil
Method ~First preparation!
- Clean all your vegetables and herbs
- Remove the tops of the peppers and de seed, remove the top of the tomatoes and the aubergine (put to one side~ keep the tops of the veg as you will need them for a lid later!). Scoop out all the flesh from the veg and keep for later use.
- Peel and chop the courgette and chop the tomatoe and aubergine place in a pan and fry in olive oil until golden then put to one side.
- Blanche the peppers in boiling water for 5 mins and brown the aubergine off in a frying pan. The tomatoes can be used as they are.
- Wash the rice and split yellow peas and cook together in boiling water for approx 15 mins. If you are using a different rice, adjust your cooking time accordingly. The rice should be al-dente.
- Brown off the minced beef and onion, adding the tomatoe paste at the end. Stir in.
- Chop all your herbs. If you’re using dried herbs, soak first.
- Take a large bowl and begin to combine all the ingredients: Add the herbs to the rice stirring in gently. Then add the cooked vegetables you put to one side earlier . Add the meat and onions, a teaspoon of salt, 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper and the advieh. Mix in very gently and by this time you will be pretty exhausted so take a break with a cup of tea and leave to stand for 10 minutes. First put the oven on at about 180 degrees.
- Now you feel refreshed begin by stuffing the peppers, pressing the mix into the pepper gently with the back of the spoon. Place in an oven proof dish. and place in your pre heated oven. The peppers are going into the oven first as they take longer. The other dolmeh will be added in a while .
- Now prepare the sauce: Take the tomatoe juice ( or whizz a can of plum tomatoes), add the ghooreh or lime juice, 1 teaspoon of salt, the saffron water, the sugar and cinnamon and 2 tablespoons of oil and bring to the boil. Allow to simmer for a few minutes.
- Add the sauce to the oven proof dish with the peppers after about an hour and place in the other dolmeh. Continue cooking for approx another hour.
The vegetables should be tender before you remove the dolmeh to serve and test the sauce as you may want to add more salt according to you own taste.
Serve with flat bread and natural yoghurt. Nooshi joonet 🙂