Welcome to aashpaz.com, a site dedicated to Persian food, its history and influence on the cuisine of the surrounding regions. Here, we have endeavoured to offer the fruits of years of research and investigation discovering long lost cookery books, gathering scattered references to food and cookery over the centuries and bringing together information gleaned from travelogues. To help us along the way, we benefitted from commentary offered by members of the Food Studies Centre at SOAS, University of London. We hope you find the information useful and would like to invite your contributions and feedback.
Julia Scott describes a European’s approach to sourcing, handling and cooking the exotic ingredients for this quintessential Persian recipe.
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If there is a special aspect of the Tabrizi cuisine which differentiates it from some other regions is its intense seasonality. Traditionally, harsh winters meant scarcity of herb and vegetables thus special attention was paid to preserving, pickling and protecting fruit to prolong their availability. I remember grape bunches kept in small brown paper bags while still on the vine long after the leaves had dropped or honey dew melons held in a cradle of straw ropes hanging from beams in pantries. We have mentioned elsewhere the autumnal preparations in the kitchen such as making a general purpose meat sauce, qorma, which was then used in recipes instead of fresh meat throughout the Winter. Winter dishes in that part of Iran are more substantial, richer and more calorific whereas summer recipes are much lighter. Azeri/Tabrizi food is slightly tangier and richer in butter or animal fat (at least in earlier times even if not now). I hope you enjoy trying out the recipes.
Tabriz recipes >