Saturday, July 17, 2010

Khoresht-e-Portugal

In the motherland, the word "khoresht" or "khoresh" (depending on what dialect you're using) basically always refers to a sort of stew. It's actually a pretty common type of dish. I mean, when I lived at home, I must have had khoreshts 5/7 nights for dinner. There are plenty of khoreshts, so it's tough to get tired of them. There's khoresht-e-bademjan (eggplant), khoresht-e-fesenjaan (pomegranate stew), khoresht-e-karafs (celery stew), and plenty more.

So what you need for this khoresht-e-portugal recipe is: water, salt, chicken, carrot, and a whole lotta Cristiano Ronaldo. mmmmm. oh so good.

Ok but really, *in greek accent* "as many of you know, the word "portugal" is come from the Persian word "porteqal," which mean "orange." So, okay? Here tonight, we have, ah, stew and orange."

There you have it. Orange stew. So, just so you know, I decided to make this because of the massive amounts of orange and carrots just left sitting in our apartment fridge with no definite plans for the future. My reasoning went a little bit like this: "I have most the ingredients? Ok. Easy enough. This is a done deal."... or so I thought. Little did I know just how much effort it would actually take.

This epic journey started with collecting the ingredients (see here for approximate list. Not exactly the same, but just about). As I mentioned before, this didn't seem like a big deal since we already had most of them, but the ones that we didn't have took a whole lotta time and effort to get my hands on.

First-the 2 tablespoons of candied silvered orange peel. Since we had four oranges, I peeled them ALL and blanched(/removed the bitterness from) these and candied them by boiling them down with lots of sugar and lots of water (4 cups of each?)

They came out a little something like this:



Then came a little bit of orange-flavored-sugar-water simmering and BAM. We got ourselves some serious syrupy/marmalade-y goodness.



And with some cute packaging, we got ourselves a definite winner.



(Oh, but also, when packaging jam or jelly or marmalade, you must take great precaution and sterilize your jars in boiling water like so:



yeah...)

Although I only really needed two tablespoons, I was happy to have more (great with toast and butter. YUM! oh, and if you want some, please do let me know!)

DONE. Well, done with making one of the ingredients... Next obstacle: obtaining the other few but very difficult to find random ingredients including: advieh and saffron. Advieh, the "Persian spice" in the ingredients list (@George: our 7th spice girl, I guess?) can be made with cinnamon, cumin, cardamom, saffron, nutmeg, and dried rose petals (+ other spices if you desire). I was definitely about to make it myself, but then luckily remembered that I had bought some last year and left it in an unlabeled bag in my brother's spice shelf. It took a bit of (literal) sniffing around, but I found it (phew!). He also had a bit of saffron on hand as well! I was very lucky (fyi-saffron is ridiculously expensive).

So once I had all the ingredients, I finally got to making the khoresht with a side of "chelow" or rice. For some reason, the rice turned out a little mushy and the bottom didn't burn (which is a bad thing to me since when you make Persian rice, you want the bottom layer of rice to get golden and crispy and mmm, it's so good), but oh well. It was still a'ight.

Now the khoresht. It consisted of a couple things: the stew itself and an orange topping. The topping was made by dropping the slices of four oranges into a pan with simmering red wine vinegar, lime juice, sugar and saffron and was left to soak up all the goodness until the stew was ready.



The stew itself was a big ol' mixture of the other ingredient, but could have been left on the stove to simmer longer to thicken. The end result?

THIS:



and a very classy candlelit dinner with Ms. Holly Ho. spectacular.

1 comment:

Kevin said...

Oh wow. I am now super-jealous of your roommates and very disappointed I can't make it for dinner tonight.

By the way, are you allowed to have candles?