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I feel very privileged today, as we head off back to the West and slightly North to Iran, that I actually work with a wonderful Iranian lady, who was willing to chat to me about their food and what is best to feed the family.

The finger actually lands on a place called Kashmar.  Kashmar is the capital of Kashmar County and at the 2006 census the population was almost 150,000. The county is then divided into two districts, The Central District and The Kuhsorkh District.  The cities in the county are Rivash and Kashmar…

Iran (formerly known as Persia). Situated in the Middle East and West Asia and has a very varied population.
I am told that Iranian food can be classed as curry without the hot Indian spices and was told that the only bad thing is that all food is cooked for a long time – slow cooked.
The Iranians believe the food is the basic part of Iranian heritage and culture. The ingredients in the cooking mirror the geography of Iran and the colours and flavours emphasise the appealing tastes of the Iranians.  Their food has been very much influenced  by Iran’s neighbouring and conquered regions at various stages throughout its history.
The varying cuisines are often associated with lots of events, like weddings, births and many other gatherings. The beautiful food and traditions are weaved with a countries past and faiths and beliefs.
Food is a very essential, vital and significant part of the civilisation and life of Iranians. Their food is often used as descriptions for various things, like “Moon-faced beauties have almond-shaped eyes, peachy complexions, pistachio-like mouths, pomegranate colored lips, hazelnut-like noses, red apple cheeks, and lemon-like breasts.”

My friend recommended for tonight a lamb dish that is a very popular dish in Iran…
Khoresh Gheymeh: A Traditional Iranian Dish with Meat and Yellow Split Peas.
My husband had started to prepare this as I was on my way home form my day job and as I walked through the door the smell was amazing.  The dish consists of Lamb, yellow split peas, turmeric, cinnamon, onion, dried limes – which Ian couldn’t find, but my friend came up trumps, but then she would being Iranian –  tomato puree, fried potatoes and Basmati Rice to serve…

Although the smell was awesome when I walked trough the door, the look was a little boring…Ian added the whole dried lime – what you can see here,,,,The lamb was already looking tender…

(Just BTW, my daughter in law to be is a pescatarian, so this menu, along with the others works well with vegetables and meat substitute…

There is no sincerer love than the love of food.

George Bernard Shaw

The final meal was amazing and the lime was very prevalent..

Family Verdict: Firstly the vegetarian option with meat substitute, it was very different, nothing like she had ever tasted before. Overall very tasty, after the initial shock of the lime, would certainly eat again,
Rest of us, meat eaters… Very nice and the lime made the meal…would even serve at a dinner party.
I personally found the lime in the recipe too much, but I am sure next time we could reduce the lime, maybe, by one……

Ladan, thank you for the recipe and the lime  – greatly appreciated – You are a star. 🙂

So next time? Who knows…we now have evening activities and a weekend in Basingstoke….But we will be back ….