Today’s recipe is from Iran. A Khoresh is a Persian stew consisting of meat (usually lamb, chicken, beef-or fish in the regions near the Persian Gulf) or they can also be vegetarian. Spices include saffron and turmeric. It is generally served with rice. There are so many variations of this dish. I made Khoresht Gharch- a stew of mushrooms and chicken spiced with saffron, lime juice, and cumin. Some other types are Khoresh Ghormeh Sabzi (stew with lamb, beans, and herbs), Khoresh Fesenjaan (stew with meat, pomegranates, and walnuts), and Khoresh Gheymeh (stew with lamb, split peas, and other vegetables).
This was my first time cooking Iranian food and it turned out great. The stew takes a bit to cook, but the resulting flavor is well worth it. It isn’t difficult to make, just has to hang out on the stove for a while. I got started late with dinner, so Chad and I didn’t end up eating until closer to 9 pm. Oops. This is probably better as a weekend meal or on a day I can start cooking in the afternoon. The chicken was perfectly tender. I love how just a small amount of saffron can produce enough of an aroma to fill my kitchen. Apparently, Chad liked the meal too. There was barely enough left for his lunch tomorrow. I am looking forward to trying other types of Khoresh in the future.
Khoresh information from Iranica Online
Khoresht Gharch (Persian Mushroom Stew)
Adapted from Kitchen Musings
1/8 teaspoon ground saffron
1/2 tablespoon hot water
3 tablespoons oil, divided
1 large onion, peeled and thinly sliced
1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed
1 pound chicken thighs, cut into 1 inch pieces
1/2 cup water
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
8 ounces fresh mushrooms
1 tablespoon flour
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 egg yolk
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
Dissolve the ground saffron in 1/2 tablespoon hot water. Set aside.
Thinly slice the onion and crush the garlic. Cut the chicken into about 1 inch pieces. In a large pot or dutch oven, heat 1 1/2 tablespoons oil over medium high heat. Once heated, add the onion, garlic, and chicken. Cook until browned.
Stir in 1/2 cup water, cover, and simmer over low heat for 45 minutes. Stir occasionally.
Heat a large skillet over medium heat with the remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons oil. Cut off the stems to the mushrooms and slice. Add them to the skillet and sprinkle with flour and parsley. Saute until lightly browned.
Add the sauteed mushrooms, soaked saffron, and lime juice to the chicken mixture. Continue to simmer, covered, for 35 minutes. Stir in the egg yolk and cumin. Simmer for another 5 minutes. Serve hot, garnished with parsley and lime wedges.