Iran: The Beauty of an Ancient Cuisine

Persian Love Cake (Photo credit: Michelle Skipper)
Persian Love Cake (Photo credit: Michelle Skipper)

Once upon a time, my brother married a beautiful young woman, an exile from Iran. And at their wedding feast, which she and her mother and sister cooked, I ate Persian food for the first time. Such intricate flavors and ingredient combinations, each mouthful a celebration of life and love.

And when she, her mother,  and my brother visited us in Morocco,  her mother brought me a copy of New Food of Life: Ancient Persian and Modern Iranian Cooking and Ceremonies by Najmieh Batmanglij (1992). (Other books by the same author include A Taste of Persia: Introduction to Persian Cooking and From Persia to Napa: Wine at the Persian Table.

With its long history, Persia (modern Iran) naturally developed a cuisine on par with the other great cuisines of the world (and that is a subject for another, longer, more scholarly post in the future).

Today, in acknowledgment of the current situation in Iran, I simply offer you the opportunity to find out for yourself something about the sophisticated and haunting flavors of Iran by visiting these Websites: Persian Cuisines, Recipes from Najmieh Batmanglij, and  Food in Iran. And please take a moment to contemplate this gallery of photos from many different photographers:

Dugh (Yogurt Drink)
Dugh (Yogurt Drink)

Appetizer Plate (Photo credit: Foodista)
Appetizer Plate (Photo credit: Foodista)
Baghala Polo
Baghala Polo
Zereshk Polo (Photo credit: Omid Tavallai)
Zereshk Polo (Photo credit: Omid Tavallai)
Persian food 3
Rice with Kebab and Pita

Chicken Kebab (Photo credit: Kim Cofino)
Chicken Kebab (Photo credit: Kim Cofino)
Kebab Plate
Kebab Plate
Eggplant and Other Delicacies
Eggplant and Other Delicacies
Persian food 11
Rice with Potatoes (Tah-Dig) and More
Tah-Dig (Rice with Potatoes)
Tah-Dig (Rice with Potatoes)
Fesenjen (Photo credit: Chris Chen)
Fesenjen (Photo credit: Chris Chen)
Bademjoon
Bademjoon
Persian Desserts (Photo credit: Cyrus Farivar)
Persian Desserts (Photo credit: Cyrus Farivar)
Persian Sweets
Persian Sweets

© 2009 C. Bertelsen

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7 comments

  • Thank you for this beautiful article! You did it again! I love persian cuisine!

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  • What a delicious photo essay! And for adding something on a brighter side in regards to Iran today. Thanks for the book suggestions, will add to list!

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  • Thank you, Tracy and Susan. I should have mentioned the rose petals; rosewater adds such an interesting flavor to certain foods.

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  • What beautiful pictures! The cake, desserts and sweets made my mouth water. I look forward to reading more on the “Ancient Cuisine” of Persia (Iran)and learn that lamb kebabs, rice and pita bread are not the only foods for this part of the Middle East.

    Like

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