Today is Iranian new year or Nowruz and I am posting the last of my Iranian adventures which was actually the first, a fabulous dinner party at my friend Nasrine‘s house in Tehran cooked by Mariam Khanum, her lovely helper and cook (there is a picture of her cooking with the late Minou Saberi in my Saveur article which is now online; Mariam is the one with a scarf on her head). I was foolish enough on that day to go to the grand bazar instead of spending the day with Mariam in the kitchen but fortunately I went back a few months later, not only to cook with Mariam and Minou but also with a few other wonderful cooks. Here are a few pictures from that first dinner.
This was definitely the star dish of the evening and luckily I was back in time to watch her stuffing the vine leaves with a mixture of sabzi (mixed herbs & greens) and split peas with barberries (zereshk) and possibly a little rice and meat although I don’t remember. Must check! Mariam cooked the stuffed leaves with unripe green gages (janarek in Arabic and gojeh in Iranian) which were in season — I was there in April.
Mariam also made three different rice dishes including jewelled rice, one with sabzi and meat where she used sliced potatoes for the tadigh and a tahchin (baked rice) which she served surrounded with dried rose petals. Gorgeous. You can glimpse it behind the bowl of ghormeh sabzi in the top picture and next to the cooked vine leaves. Happy Nowruz!
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