Discussed Persian food a few weeks ago with a friend who very generously offered to cook all sorts of yummy Persian goodies for me. I would LOVE to have her, someone, anyone cooking Persian goodies for me....but it has to be without meat.
Yanni chi, bedoon-e gusht?? (What do you mean, no meat??)
Well, it can't have any meat in it.
Morgh chi? (How about chicken?)
No. No beef, chicken, lamb, fish; no eggs; no wheat.
Nemishe! (Can't be done!) Ye zarre gusht. (Just a little bit of meat.)
Alas (or aakhe, as one says in Farsi), most Persian food doesn't translate well to vegetarian and/or gluten-free. Some dishes are vegetarian, like kashk-e bademjoon, or some simple rice dishes like adas polo (though people usually add chicken to the rice dishes). Most of the delicious khoreshes (sauces) -- fesenjoon, ghorme sabzi, and others -- they're just not the same. Must work on vegetarianizing those!
Unfortunately another one of those pesky, persistent little "craving seeds" was planted during that last foodie conversation and I had in my mind that I must come up with a vegetarian, gluten-free version of keik-e yazdi, little rosewater and cardamom-scented (really, what other scent is there in Persian desserts??) cakes. So I got right on it.
I soaked some flax seeds, mixed up some Pamela's flour, melted butter, added some rose water, freshly ground cardamom, a little this and a little that, nary a trace of eggs, or wheat, and popped them into the oven and waited. Not in vain either, mind you.
Mage mishe?? (Is it possible??)
Khob, bokhor yedune. (Well, taste one.)
Che aali!!! Dasturesh-o barayam benevis. (How wonderful!!! Write the recipe for me.)
These little gems are lovely with hot tea, coffee, or chocolate. Perfect after spicy food or whenever you need an exotic little pick-me-up.
Noosh-e jaan. (Enjoy).