Due to its variety of ethnic groups and the neighboring cultures impact, the cuisine of Iran is diverse. Herbs are frequently used, along with fruits such as plums, pomegranate, quince, prunes, apricots, and raisins. To achieve a balanced taste, characteristic flavorings such as saffron, dried lime, cinnamon, and parsley are mixed delicately and used in some special dishes. Onion and garlic are commonly used in the preparation of the accompanying course, but are also served separately during meals, either in raw or pickled form. Iranian best foods include:
Arguably the national dish of Iran, Kabab has varieties such as koubideh (ground beef or lamb), Chenjeh (cubed steak), Barg (flattened filet mignon), or chicken and is served with a plate of chelo, plain white Persian rice. This legendary fragrant staple features a bit of saffron-soaked rice for color and flavor and a slab of butter to mix in so that it’s as fluffy as possible.
One of the most traditional Iranian dishes, Dizi Sangi is a stew of lamb, tomatoes, potatoes, and various legumes cooked in a clay pot with a lump of fat. The liquid is poured into a bowl and eaten with shredded pieces of bread. Meanwhile, the remaining bits are mashed together (with or without the fat) in the pot, spread on flatbread, and eaten with pickled vegetables, onions, and/ or fresh herbs. No trip to Iran is complete without trying this one.
Gheymeh consists of split yellow peas, small cubes of beef (emphasis on small), and whole dried lime cooked with nutmeg and cinnamon and topped with French fries. Some even like to include eggplant, transforming this dish into Gheymeh Bâdemjân. Commonly served during religious festivals as a charitable offering, Gheymeh is sure to satisfy your tummy at any time. Gheymeh is often served during religious festivals.
A dish that may not look appetizing, but tastes amazing, Fesenjoon is a concoction of pomegranate Paste and finely ground walnuts simmered with either meatballs, chicken, or duck. Taking a bite of perfectly tender meat covered in tart sauce is eating not only one of the most beloved Iranian stews but also a taste of Persian heritage.
This dish features a lot of leafy greens and herbs, which is where it gets its name from. Beef and onions are sautéed before adding the greens—chives, parsley, fenugreek, spinach, dill, and savory. Kidney beans add a hint of color, and whole dried limes add a kick of acidity. Herbs, kidney beans, and whole dried limes make Ghormeh sabzi a favorite
A must-have dish during the frigid winter months, this healthy and hearty soup features noodles with various herbs and legumes, and is topped with a mixture of garlic and onions fried with dried mint. The make or break of âsh is kashk, a salty, fermented whey product, that is swirled on top. Âsh-e Reshte topped with whey, onions, and dried mint.
While travelers to Iran won’t find desserts in the traditional sense, the tea-loving culture does have a sweet tooth, breaking out the treats for any occasion and specially to enjoy with tea. Three main ingredients to be found in any combination in these desserts are saffron, rosewater, and cardamom. Here are 10 local Iranian desserts and sweets you need to try.
This rice pudding is made with just the right hint of saffron to give it the perfect shade of yellow. Words or designs are then dusted on in cinnamon, allowing children and adults to showcase their creativity, and almonds slivers give it the final finishing touch.
Iranian believe that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. From the types of bread, to the heavy meat dishes and tea etiquette, we break down how to eat breakfast like an Iranian to help you fit right in with the locals.
Sweet items such as butter, jam (especially sour cherry, carrot, or quince),clotted cream, and honey pair particularly well with Barbari bread, and savory items like feta cheese, sliced cucumbers and tomatoes, and walnuts go especially well with Sangak bread.
The ultimate staple of a traditional Iranian breakfast is bread, which is bought fresh daily. Cities may have specific local varieties, but the three standard ones are: noon-e Barbari, a long, oval shaped bread with deliciously chewy and doughy ends, noon-e Sangak, wheat flatbread baked on rocks, noon-e Tâftoon, a large, round, white flatbread, and noon-e Lavash a soft, thin unleavened flatbread made in a tandoor.
Tea Iranians drink tea all throughout the day, starting with the first piping hot glass at breakfast time. Much in the same way that Italians drink cappuccino only in the morning, Iranians have chai shirin, tea with granulated sugar, only at breakfast. At other times of the day, sugar cubes, dates, raisins, or something else sweet is used.
Is a cold savory yogurt-based beverage that is mixed with salt. It is popular in Iran, Lebanon and Syria. Generally, yogurt drinks are popular beyond the Middle East region. Doogh is served chilled and often as an accompaniment to grilled meat or rice, especially during summer. It is made by mixing yoghurt with chilled or iced water and is sometimes carbonated and seasoned with mint.