“They will always put their best on the table to feed their guests.”
"This is a land of secret recipes, passed down within families like treasured possessions"
- Anthony Bourdain, Parts Unknown (Iran)
There is nothing I can say, or share with you here that will give justice to, or the accolades that Persian cooking deserves. What I will tell you is that Persian cooking has to be experienced in the home. Recipes are passed down from generations and can take several hours to make, making it nearly impossible to prepare them in a restaurant the way Persian food should be experienced. Now don't get me wrong, you can still go to a restaurant and experience Persian Cuisine, just like if you were dining in Tehran. The food will be absolutely delicious and you will not leave hungry. There is just something about the authenticity of experiencing Persian cooking in the home that cannot be experienced elsewhere. For starters, the portions are absolutely huge. There will usually be more food then you could ever imagine so make sure to bring an appetite. You will also find on the table many foods that are good for you such as nuts, fruits and vegetables. Eggplant to Persians is what mashed potatoes are to Western culture. So yes, expect there to be an abundance of eggplant! Chicken, lamb, beef and fish are common at the table and almost every meal is served with rice. Persians are known for their love of Tah-dig, which is the crispy rice found at the bottom of the pot. Tah-dig actually means "the bottom of the pot" and good luck finding leftovers as this is one dish that will be left empty at the end of the day.
Enough of my ramblings...enjoy this collection of videos on Persian cooking, Or better yet, head down to your local Persian restaurant to experience Persian Cuisine for yourself!
Iran not what I expected
"You put far more on the table then anyone could conceivably eat"
"The food is spectacular. Iranians are very proud of their cooking — and for good reason. They are also famously generous hosts"
Learn About Persian Cuisine
I recently came across this excellent website on Persian cooking that I just had to share. Persian Mama was created by Iranian born Homa who now lives in Utah of the United States. Her passion, besides her family and enjoying life, is of course cooking. You will be absolutely amazed with the number of recipes Homa has created and I encourage you to check them out.
Visit Northern Iran via California
A video created by Zagat's Foodways and hosted by Miami Chef and Entrepreneur Jessica Sanchez. This video visits Komaaj, a pop up restaurant located in Berkeley, California founded by Iranian immigrant Hanif Sadr that specializes in the cuisine of Northern Iran. But the restaurant concept is more than just a business as Jessica discovers: it's a reminder that a taste of home can always be found as long as you have the right ingredients.
Befarmaeed Sham Vancouver
Befarmaeed Sham is the Persian version of the popular reality UK TV series Come Dine with Me. Befarmaeed Sham recently visited Vancouver in 2018 to record a thirteen series (52 episodes) for their popular reality TV show. Each series contains four episodes where four complete strangers take turns hosting a dinner party. At the end of the day, points are awarded by their dinner guests and the host with the most points wins a cash prize of $1,000 Canadian Dollars.
“As well as fruits, Iranians are obsessed with fresh herbs. No dinner table is complete without a basket of Basil, Mint and Spring Onions which are eaten between bites of a main meal”