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Culture - Recipes

Khoresht-e Bademjan (Eggplant stew)

Serves 6-8

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 2 hours

2 1/2 pounds thin long Japanese or baby eggplants Vegetable oil as needed

4 tablespoons butter

1 large onion, peeled, halved and sliced

1 pound lamb or beef stew cut into 1-inch cubes

1 can (28 ounces) plum tomatoes slightly crushed

2 to 3 dried limes (Limou Amoni) pierced several times or 1 1/2 to 2 fresh limes cut into 4 parts and seeded

1 tablespoon yellow split peas (optional)

1/4 teaspoon turmeric (optional)

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1) Peel eggplants in 1-inch intervals lengthwise. Cut around, not through stem, leave stem area pointed. For large eggplants, cut each into 4 to 6 lengthwise pieces.

2) Preheat oven to 400° F. Cover baking sheet with foil. Place eggplants (if large ones, skinside down) on sheet and brush with vegetable oil. Cook for 20 to 30 minutes.

3) In a medium-size saucepan melt butter. Sauté onion till transparent. Add meat, brown on all sides. Add 1/2 cup water, tomatoes, limes, yellow split peas, and turmeric into saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat, covered for 45 minutes or till tender. Add nutmeg, salt and pepper.

4) Place eggplants in baking dish (large enough to hold them in one layer) top with meat-sauce. Cover, cook for 45 minutes in preheat oven. Discard limes.

Serve this dish hot with rice.

(From "Secrets of Cooking" by L. Chirinian)