Want to stock up your pantry with Persian essentials? Here is a quick list of the ingredients you can add to your grocery cart:
Adviehrefers to spice mixes with different blends for various uses such as rice dishes and stews.
The variants imported from India are the traditional ones used for a Persian rice dish.
Turmeric and Cardamom
Cardamom is extensively usedin Iran, specifically in sweets and rice dishes. It is also often infused into teas. Turmeric is also used in almost all types of stews.
Dill is popular in Iran, and dill rice, in particular, is a big thing. While it is often =made with fresh dill, dried dill can also be used for the dish. Many people often have dried dillhandy if there is no fresh dill available.
Dried Nuts and Fruits
Dried nuts and fruitsare a really big part of gifting and snacking in Iran. There is a nut and fruit mix called ajil-e moshkel gosh in Farsi or “problem solver mix.” This is given to people during Nowruz to help smooth over any differences in the new year. It usually contains roasted chickpeas, green raisins, roasted hazelnuts, and pistachios, with pistachios being considered the Persian nut.
There are also walnuts used as an important thickener for fasenjun. Iranians love eating walnuts soaked in salted water that helps get rid of the bitterness. It also revives them to make them almost like a fresh nut that still has a crunch. It is often a part of a platter together with feta, flatbread,radishes, and herbs.
Barberries are a favorite among Persians as well. Almost all Persian cookbooks have a recipe that uses them. These are tart and small and are used in stews, rice dishes, and ice cream.
Dried limes are like limes butten times better. You will not only get the flesh but even the skin. These are often used in stews such asghormeh sabzi, grilled seafood, and tomato rice. A dried lime or two is also added to lentil or chicken soup to add a touch of sourness. You can soak the limes in hot water to make them soft before poking a few holes or cutting them open to disperse the flavor.
Fasenjun is one of the most iconic Persian stews which was initially made with duck. However, it can also use beef, chicken, turkey, or lamb. The body of the stew is made from pomegranate juice cooked down into syrup. While there are several different brands available now, be sure to stick with those with no added sugar to make sure that you only taste pomegranate at its finest.
Dried Rose Petals and Rose Water
A lot of desserts have rose water and cardamom as these are like vanilla and cinnamon in the US. Dried rose petals can also be added to the herb-filled omelet called kuku sabzi,and they are often added to spice mixes. You can also use fresh petals to prepare rose jam.
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