A Persian Cookbook: The Manual
About the Author
Saman Hassibi was born in Tehran, and has lived in Norway for five years as well as in Iran for most of her live. She currently lives in Christchurch, New Zealand, where she is studying for a PhD in Culinary History, and the Cultural and Social Aspects of Iranian Food. She has also prepared for publication ‘The Science of Cookery – a treatise from the Qajar Era in Cookery’ which will be published in Tehran.
Amir Sayadabdi is also studying for a PhD in Iran and Cookery, and currently resides in Christchurch, New Zealand.
Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
Chapter Five: On Chickpea Soups
B’b-e panjom: Dar sefat-e noxod’b-e raqiq va qaliz
(The recipes for thin and thick noxod’b)
Thin Chickpea Soup
Sefat-e noxod’b-e raqiq (the recipe of thin noxod’b)
Once the water is heated, wash the hogget and hens thoroughly and add to the pot, remove the foam and [add] enough salt. Then throw, say, for two hens and a mann of meat, half a mann of well cleaned chickpeas. Throw cinnamon and diced onions [and cook] until they become fall-apart tender and add some saffron too.
When the meat is to be cooked, throw some spinach and steam with the lid on for awhile and then serve in dish.
Take fattened hens, as many as wanted, and necessary amount of (red) meat. Cut hen’s stomach open and take out [its giblets]. Remove the crop, wing tip, and back of its tail. Wash it well with cold water [to remove all its dirt] so it whitens. [Stuff it with] cinnamon, diced onion, and some diced meat (qeyme) and wash some rice well and put in the hen’s stomach and sew it. Add the washed meat, [stuffed] hens, and necessary amount of water in a pot [and heat] and remove the foam. Chop [some meat] palm-sized and stuff two fat intestines with diced meat (qeyme), peeled chickpeas, enough rice, and warm spices.
Once the foam of the meat was removed, [add] whitened or peeled chickpeas, say, for two hens, there must be a mann of meat and half a mann of peeled chickpeas. All know of this method.
Having washed the chickpeas thoroughly, throw in, and remove the chickpea foam too. [Add] diced or ringed onions, cinnamon, and throw in chickpea flour if wanted [the soup] halim-like.
When the meat is to be done, throw in some small meatballs too. Throw in some saffron and warm spices with some spinach and steam with the lid on.
Lamb Chickpea Soup
Sefat-e noxod’b-e gu’t-e barre (the recipe of lamb noxod’b)
Take fat lamb and cut it to pieces. Pour necessary amount of water in a pot [and heat]. Once the water is heated, wash the meat thoroughly and throw [in the pot] and remove its foam. Wash well peeled or crushed chickpeas, whichever is available, and throw in the pot. Add diced onions, cinnamon, ginger, and pepper and throw in small meatballs, too.
When the meat is to be done, throw in spinach and steam with the
Dar sefat-e m’st v' (the recipe for yogurt stew)
Take lamb or mutton. Pour necessary amount of water in pot [and heat]. Throw in the meat and remove the foam. Throw in onion, [rice,] peeled chickpeas, beet, and necessary amount of salt. Once the rice is half-done, dissolve good [quality] strained yogurt with water smooth and pass it through clean thin muslin and throw it in the pot.
Once the yogurt is boiled, cut some spinach leaves in half and throw with some diced fresh mint and stripped tarragon leaves. Stir gently using the tip of the ladle until cooked. Throw in it ground dried mint and pounded garlic dissolved in cold water, then take down. Try not to overcook the lamb and if it is already cooked, take it out instantly and when the stew is to be done, reheat it (the meat) within the stew, and then serve which would be nice.
 V’ or b’ are Persian terms for a type of thick soup or stew (i.e. ??).
 Selq (Arabic) in Persian can mean beetroot, beet greens, and chard. As the recipe asks for it to be added quite early, and before other greens, the root might be inferred. However, the term in Arabic means chard.
 I.e. add the cooked meat back to the pot so it warms up by the heat of the ready stew.