To help us learn more about Persian (a.k.a. Iranian) food, we turned to culinary authority Najmieh Batmanglij. In addition to insight on Persian culinary traditions, she provided us with recipes from her book New Food of Life.
What to buy: Advieh is a mix of numerous herbs, the most common of which are cumin, cinnamon, cardamom, and dried rose petals. It can be found in Middle Eastern markets or at Kalustyan’s.
1In a Dutch oven, brown onions and chicken pieces in 3 tablespoons oil, sprinkle in 1 tablespoon flour and mix well. Add orange or tangerine peel, advieh, salt, and pepper. Pour in the orange juice. Cover and simmer for 35 minutes.
2Scrape the carrots and slice into thin slivers. Sauté in 2 tablespoons oil for a few minutes. Add the carrot to the chicken, cover, and simmer for 1 hour.
3Peel the oranges, separate them into segments, and peel the membrane from each segment.
4In a saucepan, combine the vinegar, lime juice, sugar, and saffron water. Mix well and simmer for 10 minutes over low heat. Remove from heat and add the orange segments and set aside to macerate for 10 minutes.
5Transfer the stew to a deep ovenproof casserole, carefully arrange the orange segments with the sauce on the top, cover and place in a warm oven until ready to serve.
6Check to see if the chicken is tender. Taste and adjust seasoning. Add more sugar or lime juice according to your taste.
7Just before serving, sprinkle the stew with slivered pistachios and almonds. Serve hot from same dish with chelow. Nush-e Jan!
Variation: Canned orange segments or tangerines in syrup may be substituted for fresh oranges and sugar. This dish may also be made without carrots.
Beverage pairing:Mastroberardino Novaserra Greco di Tufo, Italy. With carrots, almonds, saffron, and oranges, this dish will be good with a wine that has a little spice, earth, and nutty richness. Greco di Tufo, a grape from Southern Italy fits this profile. The wine isn’t as complex as the dish, but in this case that’s a good thing.
This recipe, while from a trusted source, may not have been tested by the CHOW food team.