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IRAN

Kho

-re-sh, derived from the Persian verb kho

-rdan (to

eat), is a kind of stew prepared to these rules. The base for every kho

-re-sh is fried onions (garlic is added in the northern and southern regions), meat or poultry, the ap- propriate spices and seasoning. These are left to simmer in water to a desired consistency, then lightly fried veg- etables, herbs, or fruit are added. Depending on vegeta- bles and herbs in season, countless varieties are made all over Iran. For example, chopped mint and parsley would

make kho

-re-sh-é na’najafari with celery, or, in the spring, rhubarb, greengages, acanthus, or young green almonds with verjuice (sour grape juice) as seasoning. The famous

kho

-n, which turns into a thick light or dark brown sauce, is made of ground walnuts seasoned with pomegranate juice or paste and has a sweet and sour taste. The cooling effect of pomegranate juice balances the warm and rich property of walnuts. This is an au- tumn and winter kho

-re-sh-é fe-se-nja

Fish. Fish is cooked in a variety of ways in the Caspian Sea provinces and alongside the Persian Gulf and the Ara- bian Sea. In the Khuzistan region well-spiced baked fish seasoned with tamarind is among the specialities whereas in the Caspian area it is barbecued or stuffed with herbs, including dried pomegranate seeds, baked and served with bitter oranges. The Caspian caviar is an important item for export, and the large grey and the rare golden of the Iranian coast are famous among connoisseurs.

Bread. Bread or na

cept in the rice-growing areas along the Caspian coast, it is the staple food of Iranians. Kho eaten with na

most common varieties of bread are sangak (baked on

pebbles), ta

-ftu

-re-sh customarily made with duck, or further derivation is ana

with chicken or meatballs as substitutes. In late autumn it can be made with ripe walnuts and pomegranate juice. In winter chunks of eggplant or pumpkin, dried prunes, and apricots may be added. It is then called mo

-r-a

juice and herbs), prepared in the Caspian region. An- other speciality is kho

-re-sh-é gho -re

-vı-j (pomegranate paste or -rme-h-sabzi made with

-tanjan. A

mixed herbs and red kidney beans (in the south, black- eyed beans) with whole dried limes used for fragrance, freshness, and seasoning. Also common is kho

-sh-e

gheimeh (diced meat) with split peas, served plain or with fried potato sticks and dried lime as seasoning or egg- plant, zucchini (courgettes), or celery with sour grapes as seasoning, quinces, or apples with sweetened vinegar as seasoning, etc. A luxury, known from the imperial court of the Qa

-ja -rs (nineteenth century), is gheime

-h-mo -rassa’

(jeweled diced meat), which in place of split peas uses skinned whole pistachios with ample saffron for aroma and color.

Kho -k and side dishes. Kho -k, also derived from the

verb kho

-rdan (‘to eat’) cooked with or without meat, cover an extensive range and reflect the significant contribu- tions of Gı

-ra

-la

-mi—meat cooked with split peas pounded and kneaded with eggs, ground cumin, and saffron, shaped in a round patty and deep-fried; ku

dishes are kaba fowl, or fish; sha

-b, meticulously arranged layers of onion, meat, tomatoes, carrots, eggplant, potatoes, and quinces or apples (depending on the season), sprinkled with car- damom and cinnamon, chopped dried lime, and prunes steam-cooked in its own juice on low heat; kashk-ba

ja

-s-kaba -lme

-h—stuffed vegetables or vine or cabbage

-n—fried eggplant topped with kashk (whey) and taste- fully garnished; mı-rza

-de -se -m-

-gha -mi, grilled eggplant cooked

with garlic, tomatoes, and eggs. Side dishes are prepared with various vegetables cooked or raw and mixed with yogurt seasoned with aromatic herbs.

286

-n and Azerbaijan provinces. Among these -b, a variation of charcoal-grilled meat,

-ku

-, a form of

thick puffed omelette or soufflé of different vegetables or

herbs; do leaves; ta

-ra

-n as well as rice. Made in a flat form, the

-n, thin lava

-ra

(dough mixed with milk), and crispy na

_

mixed with butter).

Soups. A

-sh, thick barbari, na -n-é ro

-ghani (dough -n-e ´shı-rma -l

sh is the general name for a thick soup made with herbs, rice, or pulses with or without meat, served plain or variably seasoned. It is another prominent and universal feature of Iranian cuisine. The recipe for

a

-sh-e sac (spinach soup) has been passed down from the Sassanid era. A

_

and kashk is a convenient dish in tribal life. A

_

sh cooked using barley, wheat, or noodles

-sht (lit-

bgu

erally meat juice) is made with mutton, onions, turmeric, chickpeas, pinto beans, tomatoes, potatoes, and dried lime; the stock is separated and the rest is pounded into a paste. It is the sustaining food of all classes. Other vari- ations of a

other soup is known as kalle-h-pa

-bgu

-n is revered as a gift from God. Ex-

-re

-shs and kho -ks are

-sht are derived from this basic form. An- -cheh (sheep’s head and

pig’s feet in a bouillon); when homemade, tripe is often added. Halı-m is a homogeneous porridgelike soup made with wheat and pounded meat of lamb, turkey, or goose, garnished with melted butter and powdered cinnamon.

Ku

-fte -fte

-h tabrı-yi of Azerbaijan is so large

bdu

-gh, a soup

that it can hold a chicken, an egg, prunes, barberries, or- ange peel, and almonds in its center.

There are cold soups for summer. A

_

made from cucumber, raisins, and herbs in diluted yo- gurt is everybody’s meal. E

–shkane

such as sour cherries, is both refreshing and filling.

Confections and preserves. A common confection is

ha

-lva, prepared from flour, butter, diluted sugar, saf- fron, and rosewater. Tar ha

of ha

-lva, is prepared with ground rice instead of flour and with crushed orange peel or yellow rose petals. Other well-known desserts are sho

-lva, a sophisticated version -lle-hzard, made with

rice, water, butter, sugar, saffron, and almond slivers and garnished with cinnamon and crushed pistachio; masqati, made with starch, water, sugar, butter, car- damom, and almond slivers; and yakhdarbe-he-sht, pre- pared with starch, milk, and sugar. All are perfumed with rosewater or orange-blossom water.

Jams, preserves, torshis (pickles), and sherbets (soft and refreshing cold drinks) such as se

-rkange

-bin, made of

ENCYCLOPEDIA OF FOOD AND CULTURE

-h, made with fresh fruit

-h refers to tiny to very large meatballs in onion- based soup. 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