Persian feasts in my kitchen: The first courses

After the introduction to some fantastic Persian blogs, we’re continuing with our Persian journey. I now got our favourite Persian book from A., A Taste of Persia, lovingly called Batbook, which is the book we used most for our feast, so tonight, I’ll tell you about the dishes in more details.

Just to remind you, here’s the lovely Batbook:


A Taste of Persia: An Introduction to Persian Cuisine

A taste of Persia – by Najmieh Batmanglij

Right, and here’s the summary of the menu:



Yoghurt & Cucumber Salad (V)

Feat & walnut salad with herbs (V)

Stuffed peppers, aubergines and tomatoes (in a tangy tomato sauce )(V)

Fresh Herb Kuku – Iranian baked omelette (V)

Lamb fillet kebabs



Saffron Rice (V)

Rice-stuffed chicken

Potato and lamb koresh with orange feel(Iranian stew)

Duck in walnut and pomegranate sauce



Iranian almond and rosewater baklava served with vanilla ice-cream



And now the delicious details:



Yoghurt & Cucumber Salad (V)

Mast-o khiar, Batbook pg. 26

IranianFeast06.09 077

Yoghurt & Cucumber Salad – Photo by Samantha Twigg Johnson

The recipes for this salad, which can easily be turned into a soup, is availably on Batmanglij’s website, Najmieh’s Kitchen. Yoghurt is combined with cucumber, mint, spring onions, dill, oregano, thyme, tarragon, garlic and raisins for a refreshingly cooling summery salad. Garnished with radish, walnuts, herbs and rose petals, it is a beauty to behold.



Feat & walnut salad with herbs (V)

This isn’t an Iranian recipe, but my creation based on an Iranian cheese and walnut spread from Batbook (pg. 33). We didn’t have the time to puree it in the blender, plus I improvised a bit with the ingredients, but ths spirit is there: cheese, walnuts, herbs. And it’s fantastic! I love the combination of the salty feta and walnuts! I works really really well. Especially with the fresh herb kuku. I’ll post the recipe soon.



Stuffed peppers, aubergines and tomatoes (in a tangy tomato sauce) (V)

Dolmeh-ye felfel sabz-o badjeman-o gojeh farangi, Batbook pg. 36

We adapted this recipe to make it veggie friendly by omitting the meat completely, and increasing the quantities of rice and yellow split peas (or chana dhal in our case). These were mixed with herbs and advieh and then used to stuff the veg. The tangy tomato sauce has sugar, cinnamon, lime juice and saffron on it.



Fresh Herb Kuku – Iranian baked omelette (V)

Kuku-ye sabzi, Batbook pg. 49

IranianFeast06.09 035

IranianFeast06.09 031

Fresh Herb Kuku – Photos by Samantha Twigg Johnson

I was quite impressed by kuku, the wonderful Iranian omelette. This version is baked in the oven, and based on fresh herbs: parsley, coriander, spring onions (including the green bits), fresh fenugreek (methi). The original recipe calls for dill and chives, but we didn’t have any, so I substituted what we had. The herby egg mixture is seasoned with advieh, Iranian spice mixture, and given a slightly tart edge with the addition of barberries, sour little berries characteristic of Iranian cooking. We also threw in a small handful of walnuts for a bit of crunch, and it was delicious. Really good with the yoghurt salad, and the feta and walnut salad. Batmanglij’s recipe (without the walnuts) is available on

Lamb fillet kebabs

Kabab-e barg, Batmanglij pg. 76

If you have a chance, have a look at the picture of kebabs on pg. 76 in Batmanglij’s book. Ours looked nothing like it. I think we have a long way to go in perfecting our kebab skills. Oh well, at least we had fun. Have you ever tried juicing an onion? No? Oh you must. Actually you mustn’t. Still hilarious though!


Let me tell you about mains next….




Here are the other posts from my Persian series:


Persian feast in my kitchen: Intro

Persian feast in my kitchen: the mains

Persian baklava: the sweet end to our feast


And check out:

Persian food blogs




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  1. What an amazing menu! An incredible Persian feast! Lovely photos of kuku and yogurt. They look very tasty.

    Juicing an onion? So funny, I must have become immune to it. I use a food processor.


  2. Thanks, Azita. We really loved it, too.

    Gosh – the onion! I think we did use the food processor to chop it up, and then we tried to squeeze the juices out. In vain, of course. Oh how my hands reeked for days after that! It makes me cringe even just thinking of it.


  1. Persian Feast in My Kitchen: The mains « Maninas: Food Matters
  2. Persian baklava – the sweet end to our feast « Maninas: Food Matters
  3. Persian food blogs « Maninas: Food Matters
  4. Persian feast in my kitchen: Intro « Maninas: Food Matters

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