Friday, February 13, 2009
Yummy persian food
A few weeks ago I took a one-time Persian cooking class at PCC (a natural foods supermarket in Washington state) about Persian cooking. It was my first time trying Persian food and it was wonderful - flavors totally different to anything I'd experienced before. I was mistaken when I thought it would be similar to other middle eastern cuisines (Lebanese, Egyptian, etc).
Yesterday I decided to try and recreate Khoresh-e Fesenjoon, which is Pomegranate-Walnut Stew, traditionally served with chicken but for our purposes with chicken-style seitan (a vegan "meat" made of wheat).
Since I just got a new cookbook called Yellow Rose Recipes, I was excited to find a recipe for chicken-style seitan. It was my first try at making seitan, and while I think it was not super-successful (didn't follow the recipe carefully enough, although it was pretty basic), I still threw it in for the stew.
I put too much lemon in there and didn't process the walnuts finely enough, but otherwise it was pretty good, and you should definitely seek Persian/Iranian food in your life one way or another. We also got to try a cardamom-infused baklava in the class, so I'm hoping to try that soon too.
Khoresh-e-Fesenjoon- Pomegranate Walnut Stew with Chicken-style Seitan
2 cups walnuts
1 large onion, diced
4 tablespoons oil
1 package chicken-style seitan
1 cup pomegranate juice concentrate - more if you're using a thinner pomegranate juice
1/2 cup water
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 cup sugar - maybe less; this turned out quite sweet
1/4 teaspoon ground saffron
2 teaspoons salt
Pulse the walnuts in a food processor until finely ground, but be careful not to over-do it. You want it to be fine crumbs. Set aside.
In a large pot, saute onions in the oil for 5 minutes. Add the seitan and ground walnuts and mix. Add remaining ingredients.
Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for at least one hour. Stir periodically.
Serve over basmati rice.
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