Modern persian cuisine case1: Orange, Barberry safferon sauce
This is a recipe for a rich buttery sauce, I designed based on our commonly used ingredients in Iran. For those of you who are in fund of sweet and sour flavors, I thought it was worthwhile to post this recipe. Barberry, or as we call it Zereshk, has a sharp sour flavor and so finds its way to Persian dishes by being balanced with sweet ingredients; mostly sugar. Even though Iran is the biggest producer of these berries, they also are found in some of the dishes from Mediterranean cuisines. If you decide not to buy them online, you know where you have to look for them!
Here are the ingredients you need for the sauce:
1/4 cup of barberry
1/4 cup of sugar1 TSP rich saffron solution *
2 oranges,juice and zest
2 TBSP cold unsalted butter
pinch of cinnamon and salt
*Dissolve saffron in water and keep refrigerated.
There is no exact recipe for this but you have to
be generous with saffron. The color should be
similar to what you see on the right.
Optional: Add one star anise pod, one whole clove and a TSP of freshly grated ginger. These I omitted cause are not actually Persian ingredients.
Add the first 3 ingredients and zest of one of the oranges to a sauce pan. Add a pinch of cinnamon and salt.
You can serve this sauce with assorted meat or veggie dishes. Here I served it with chicken and Tah-chin. Unlike most of cuisines, the Persian use interesting cooking techniques to make rice dishes. Rice is our staple carb and if you don't like it that's probably because you only have had it boiled and hence bland. A good translation for Tah-chin would be baked rice with yogurt. To prepare that, you should semi cook the rice-this state is achieved when you can halve a rice grain lengthwise with your thumb, while the mentioned grain is sitting on your index finger - then the rice is drained and baked in a mixture of yogurt,egg yolk, butter and last but not least saffron solution. Here is the recipe I used
1 cup of Basmati or jasmine rice
1/2 cup of yogurt
1 egg yolk
2 TBSP melted butter
1 TSP sugar
1 TSP rich saffron solution
pinch of nutmeg
1 TSP salt
Brown your chicken thigh pieces. Add some chopped onion and garlic and half cup of chicken stock.
Serve with plenty of the sauce with some barberry, pistachio and almond-This one I ran out so you don't see in the pic-lightly sauteed in butter . To serve I also used sweet chili pickle from here.