Potato samosa

 Samosa or as we say in Farsi sambuse  سمبوسه is a fried , boiled or baked pastry with different filling such as vegetables, meat and spices.

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Nowadays, samosa is a  very popular dish in most of countries. In my country Iran, In South and East of country  samosa is a snack but  in old days it was as a main course in Khorasan  province( East) of Iran. Preparing this dish is very easy .

Ingredients

Filo pastry
2 cooked boiled potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes
Small bunch of parsley
½ tsp turmeric powder
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tbsp. flour
butter
Oil

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Preparation

Finely chop parsley. Heat the oil in a pan. Add chopped potatoes, parsley, turmeric, season with salt and chilli. Saute for 2-3 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat.
Mix 2 tbsp .flour with 2-3 tbsp. water and set aside.

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Brush melted butter on a sheet of filo pastry. Put one full spoon of potato mixture on filo pastry and roll it. Do not overfill because will be difficult to roll up. Then, apply flour glue on two ends of rolled filo and fold it upon, and seal two ends properly. Repeat with remaining of ingredients.
Heat the oil in a pan and deep fry rolled pastries until golden brown. Drain on paper towel to get rid of extra oil. Serve this tasty crunchy samosa with pickled jalapeno .

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Samosa

Ingredients

Filo pastry
2 cooked boiled potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes
Small bunch of parsley
½ tsp turmeric powder
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tbsp. flour
butter
Oil

Preparation

Finely chop parsley. Heat the oil in a pan. Add chopped potatoes, parsley, turmeric, season with salt and chilli. Saute for 2-3 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat.
Mix 2 tbsp .flour with 2-3 tbsp. water and set aside.

Brush melted butter on a sheet of filo pastry. Put one full spoon of potato mixture on filo pastry and roll it. Do not overfill because will be difficult to roll up. Then, apply flour glue on two ends of rolled filo and fold it upon, and seal two ends properly. Repeat with remaining of ingredients.
Heat the oil in a pan and deep fry rolled pastries until golden brown. Drain on paper towel to get rid of extra oil. Serve this tasty crunchy samosa with pickled jalapeno .

Chocolate covered date pops

I like call these beauties golden and sliver dates. They are healthy and good source of fiber and vitamins.

Persian dates are called ‘ Khorma خرما ; in Farsi, however other words such as Nakhl نخل and Rotab رطب are used too. Dates are grown and cultivated in South and East of Iran. From a historical point of view, it is estimated that the date palm was cultivated in Iran about the 3rd millennium BC . Archaeological evidence shows that there were signs of date trees in stamps from the Elamites period.

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Iran is one of the most important producers of dates in the world and more than 400 types of dates are known in Iran.

Some dates are soft, dark and fleshy with high moisture and wet. Some are semi dried

The colour of dates varies from light brown to dark brown. Dates have different shapes, some are long and slender, some are round shape.

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The Mazafati مضافتی fresh dates are one of the most famous and best tasting dates in Iran. Other type of very good quality Iranian date that are soft, slender and super tasty is called Piarom پیارم . The surface skin of piarom is very thin and clings to the date flesh.

In Iranian cuisine we use dates as an ingredient in main meals or stew, such as date-pilaf, egg-date for making snacks and desserts such as cookies, date pastry and cakes. Recipes to use dates are beyond the imagination. They are excellent to eat as they are . Dates contain good fibre and sugar.

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Ingredients

  • Dates
  • white chocolate
  • Dark chocolate
  • Some nuts such as walnuts, peanuts butter, almond or pistachio
  • lollipop sticks
  • Edible golden/silver luster dust
  • Desiccated coconut

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Instructions

remove the pit from date. Stuff it with nuts. Take one of the lollipops stick and insert into the date up to top of the date. Use your fingers and tightly close the date.

Melt white and dark chocolate separately. Dip the date into the melted chocolate until fully covered. Continue doing same process with reaming dates. Set them in a stand and put them in the fridge for 30 minutes until set completely and at the end spray golden or silver luster dust on dates and make them double lovely. You might be cover dates with coconut.

 

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Chocolate covered date pops

 

Ingredients

  • Dates
  • white chocolate
  • Dark chocolate
  • Some nuts such as walnuts, peanuts butter, almond or pistachio
  • lollipop sticks
  • Edible golden/silver luster dust
  • Desiccated coconut

 

Instructions

remove the pit from date. Stuff it with nuts. Take one of the lollipops stick and insert into the date up to top of the date. Use your fingers and tightly close the date.

Melt white and dark chocolate separately. Dip the date into the melted chocolate until fully covered. Continue doing same process with reaming dates. Set them in a stand and put them in the fridge for 30 minutes until set completely and at the end spray golden or silver luster dust on dates and make them double lovely. You might be cover dates with coconut

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My yogurt balls

Hi my dear page visitors. I am just in love with these yogurt balls. Aren’t they gorgeous? They look like jewels. Very healthy, light and tasty snacks. It is fantastic when you see how easy yogurt transform into these tasty balls.

Once you made your yogurt balls , you may keep plain yogurt balls in a jar with some olive oil or topping and serve them.

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For making these tasty yogurt balls you would need to get rid of yogurt liquid and I made it with traditional method, as you would see in the following recipe. Also you have myriad choices for topping from dried herbs to seeds and nuts.

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Ingredients

  • 500g Greek yogurt
  • 2 tsp salt

For topping

  • Dried herbs such as: dill, mint, oregano, chives,
  • Smoked paprika
  • Pomegranate seeds
  • Chilli flakes
  • Dried rose petals
  • Chopped walnuts

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Instructions

Stir salt into the yogurt . Pour the yogurt into a double layer of cheesecloth or kitchen cloth. Tied up the corners.. Hang it over a bowl and leave to drain for 24 hours, until all liquid left in the bowl and strain away.

That’s all you have to do . Resulting is a thick and creamy yogurt.

Shape it into little balls and roll in a topping your choice.

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Fruit leather ( Persian lavashak )

I remember in my childhood my aunties always used to make fruit leathers in traditional way in large trays and leave them outside in the garden or on the roof of their house in the sun for several days to dry out.

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You do not even need to have perfect fruit, so if there is some bruised fruits, just cut bad part and throw away and just chop them, blend them , mix them with honey or lemon juice and let them dry.

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Fruit leather which is called Lavashak  in Persian language is super easy to make and is a healthy snack. You can make fruit leather with kiwi, mango, apple, prunes, plum, peach,.. …

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If you like sweet taste would add honey or if you prefer sour taste simply add some lime/lemon juice.

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Ingredients

  • 3 cups Mango, chopped
  • 3 cups plums
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp honey

 

Instructions

Heat the oven to 120C

put chopped mango into a blender and puree it until smooth. Taste it if you want to be sweeter add 1 tbsp honey or on the contrary if you want to have sour fruit leather, add one 1-2 tbsp lime or lemon juice. pour the puréed mixture onto a lined baking sheet ( either silicone or parchment paper).

With a spatula spread it or simply shake the tray and spread the puree in the baking tray.

You need to slowly dry out the fruit leather, so be patient and Place the baking tray in the oven and let the fruit purée dry out. Typically it will take 3-4 hours to dry out and when the surface of fruit leather is smooth and not sticky, it means fruit leather is ready.

Once it is done allow to set at room temperature for 1 hour. When the fruit leather is ready, using a cuter and cut it into stripes and roll it .

They would be perfectly safe to store in the fridge for long time.

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Potato soup

With few ingredients you can create a lush and delicious home made comfort potato soup.

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Ingredients

  • 400 g potatoes, peeled and diced into small pieces
  • 100 g onion, finely chopped
  • 4-5 spring onions ( green part)
  • 900 ml vegetable stock
  • 120 ml cold milk
  • 50 g butter
  • Salt and chilli flakes to taste

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Instructions

Melt the butter in a pan. Add chopped potatoes and onion. Sauté them until softened. Then remove them to a pot. Add chopped spring onions, vegetable stocks, milk and season with salt and chilli flakes. Gently stir and allow to cook for 15 minutes.

Purée the soup, garnish it with freshly chopped herbs and drops of olive oil and serve it.

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Green beans frittata ( Tabrizi Kookoo loobia sabz)

Kookoo lobia sabz is a traditional classic dish in Tabriz an ancient city in NW of Iran. This dish is served in especial occasions and for Iftar in month of Ramadan.

Tabrizi green beans is absolutely delicious, full of flavour and colour.

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Kookoo ( kuku) in Iranian cuisine, applies to an eggy dish or an egg-based dish. Kookoo or frittata might be meatless that would be a vegetarian dish and sometimes is made with meat.

Kookoo is a mixture of whipped eggs with different ingredients.

Green beans is called loobia sabz in Farsi language. My today recipe is meatless kookoo loobia sabz but you can add 200g minced beef to the ingredients if you wish.

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Ingredients

  • 350 g baby green beans, finely diced and boiled
  • 100 g carrots, finely diced and boiled
  • 100 g potatoes, finely diced and fried
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped and fried
  • 5 eggs
  • 2 tbsp chopped walnuts
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 1 tbsp saffron water
  • 1 tbsp milk
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Vegetable oil

Instructions

Crack the eggs into a large bowl. Add milk, chopped walnuts, flour, baking powder, saffron water, turmeric and season with salt and pepper. Whisk it well until all ingredients combine together. Saffron smell spread all over the kitchen and it’s lovely.

Next, add fried and boiled vegetables to the egg mixture. Mix all together.

Heat the oil in a deep pan, pour the mixture in the pan. Firmly press the ingredients with the back of the spoon to the down. Cover the pan with a lid and allow to cook on side ( about 10-15 minutes), then flip over to cook other side.

Serve it in a platter garnish with Zereshk (Barberries) and cut it into pieces.

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Deemaaj

Qazvin in NW of Tehran, is one of ancient cities of Iran. Qazvin was capital of the Persian Empire under Safavids for 57 years.

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Nowadays, this city is one of important cultural and tourism centre in Iran due to archaeological sites, fortifications, monuments, ……. and beautiful sights and for its carpet patterns, poets, pistachio gardens and Sweets such as Baklava.

Name of my recipe is Demaaj or Dumaaj that is a traditional cold food in Qazvin and Tabriz. Dumaaj is a light, traditional and different food. When weather gets warmer, this food would be one of amazing cold food recipes for summer time.

Deemaaj is combination of Persian naan Lavash with aromatic fresh herbs, plain yogurt, cream and walnuts.

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Recipe for this food is slightly different area by area. Deemaj is one of healthy foods for Iftar in month of Ramadan. One of essential ingredients for deemaaj is Persian naan Lavash. If you do not have access to this bread, tortillas bread would be good substitute.

Other ingredient is Iranain Paneer ( cheese) , and good substitute for cheese also would Greek cheese.

Preparing this food is very cheap and easy. You can store it for several days in the fridge. I recommend you to try this refreshing and light meal for a warm summer afternoon.

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Ingredients

  • 1 large Persian Lavash naan bread ( 2 tortillas bread)
  • 2 medium cucumber, finely chopped
  • 4-5 spring onions, finely chopped
  • Small bunch of each herbs includes: dill, chives, mint, coriander, parsley, tarragon
  • 100 g chopped walnuts
  • 100 g Feta cheese, crumbled
  • 100 g butter or clotted cream
  • 4 tbsp Greek yogurt
  • ¾ of a cup water
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

Break the bread into small pieces and toast it in a pan until crunchy.

Add water to the yogurt and season with salt- pepper and paprika. Whisk it well until you have a thick liquid.

Now, mix yogurt mixture with cream or butter and crumbled cheese. Next, in a large bowl with chopped herbs, cucumber, bread and chopped walnuts, add yogurt mixture and gently combine all ingredients together.

Allow to set in the fridge for 2 hours until firm, then give mini ball shapes and serve it. You can store this lovely bites fresh for few days in the fridge.

 

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Easy nut energy bar

Hi lovely people. If you are very busy that have no time to eat your food, a delicious and good solution is nut energy bar that is a good sources of protein and carbohydrate.

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1 cup almond
  • ½ cup sesame seed
  • ½ cup pistachio
  • ½ cup cashew
  • ½ cup pumpkin seed

For syrup

  • 1 cup white or brown sugar
  • ½ cup honey
  • Half a lime or lemon juice
  • pinch of salt

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Instructions

Roast all of nuts in a pan for 5 minutes. Keep stirring and once they roasted remove from the heat.

In a pot add all ingredients for syrup. Stir together and then simmer the syrup on low heat for 5 minutes. Pour the syrup on nuts, combine together and let to cook for 2 minutes.

 

Line your cake mould with parchment paper or grease it. Pour nuts mixture in it and refrigerate it for 2-3 hours. Remove from the mould and cut it into small pieces.

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Spinach and garlic-yogurt rolls

This is such a delicioussssssssssss and good finger food, party nibbles or snack. Star of this recipe is spinach. You can use either fresh or frozen spinach leaves. One of other ingredients for this beautiful dish is barberry which is called ‘ Zereshk  ‘ in Persian language. Zereshk is dried fruit of Barberries.

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Iran is the largest producer of zereshk in the world. Most of the zereshk gardens are located in NE of Iran in Khorasan province.

This red colour fruit is used a lot in Iranian cooking. As adding to the rice ( pilaf/polow), or dish with chicken or adding to Persian frittata ( Kookoo). Also for making zereshk jam and zereshk juice that is very refreshing and delicious with good source of vitamin C.

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Ingredients

  • 150 g spinach leaves
  • ½ onion, chopped
  • 1 cup Greek yogurt
  • 2 garlic cloves, grated
  • 5 eggs
  • 3 tbsp chopped walnuts
  • 2 tbsp barberry zereshk ( substitute for zereshk might be currant)
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil

Method

Preheat the oven to 180C.

Add spinach leaves with 3 tbsp water to a pot . Cook it for 3-4 minutes. Remove from the heat and squeeze to get ride of extra water.

Pour cooked spinach, onion, spices, oil and eggs in a food processor or a blender. Mix well for 2 minutes or until you have a smooth mixture. Add Chopped walnuts and barberry to the mixture. Combine it.

 

Cover the baking tray with parchment paper. Pour the spinach mixture in it and with a spoon or a spatula spread the liquid mixture equally in the tray. Cook it in the oven for 15 minutes. We nearly done it.

While spinach get to be ready, add grated garlic and pinch of salt to the Greek yogurt and mix together, set aside.

Once spinach cooked remove from the oven. Allow to cool down. Now, flip over spinach and remove the paper. With a knife cut the spinach into long strips ( as you see in the photos).

Spread garlic-yogurt on each strip and roll it gently. Once all strips rolled out, refrigerate them for an hour and then serve it.

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Spicy lentil flatbread

This flat lentil bread recipe is sooooo good and delicious. There are different kinds of lentils: red or orange, brown, green, yellow. I made my lentil bread with red ones. You can find all of them in your local super markets and Middle East grocery stores.

There are used different names in different languages for lentils, for example in Persian and Arabic it’s called ‘ Adas’, in English ‘ Lentil’ , in Azerbaijani ‘ Marje’.Maybe some of you do not know what red lentils are. I have attached a photo of this kind of lentil.

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You can make lentil bread with all of those lentils. This bread is very light, low in carb but high in fibre and good source of protein.

I frequently make this bread, because we enjoy it a lot. Recipe for this bread is flexible. I mean you have loads and loads of possibilities to change the flavour and create a new flavour and taste.

It’s super easy recipe to follow plus you can prepare the batter, pour it in a jar and keep it fresh in the fridge for next few days. Just bring the batter out of the fridge before cooking and bring the batter to room temperature.

This bread might be severed warm or cold and goes well with all kinds of soup, and you can top it with your favourite toppings. Good point of this bread is not only you can cook it in a pan but also you can cook it in the oven : 190C for 20-25 minutes.

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup red lentils, soak in cold water overnight
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tbsp chopped spring onions or chives
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1 ½ tsp cumin powder
  • ½ tsp chilli powder
  • ½ tsp grounded coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Vegetable oil: coconut oil or sun flower oil

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Method

Soak lentils with water for 6-7 hours to remove starch. Then drain it.

In a bowl with your lentils add 2 cups of water, all above mentioned spices except spring onions or chives. Blend until smooth. Add chopped chives or spring onion. Mix well.Lightly oiling a pan with Olive or coconut oil.

Using a large ladle  and pour one  ladle of prepared batter into the pan. Make a round shape and make  sure it is not thin.  Each flat bread will take about 4-5 minutes per side to cook ( depends on heat and how thick you make the bread). Spray oil  top of batter and once one side cooked , flip over and let to cook other side.

 

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