Bottom of the Pot: Persian Recipes and Stories by Naz Deravian

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    • Categories: Spice / herb blends & rubs; Cooking ahead; Persian
    • Ingredients: ground cinnamon; ground rose petals; ground cumin; ground cardamom; nutmeg; ground coriander
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    • Categories: How to...; Persian
    • Ingredients: saffron
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    • Categories: How to...; Persian
    • Ingredients: Damask rose petals
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    • Categories: Dips, spreads & salsas; Appetizers / starters; Persian; Vegetarian
    • Ingredients: Japanese eggplants; yellow onions; turmeric; garlic; dried mint; kashk; walnuts
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    • Categories: Cooking ahead; Persian; Vegan; Vegetarian
    • Ingredients: yellow onions; garlic; turmeric; mint
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    • Categories: Sandwiches & burgers; Quick / easy; Snacks; Cooking ahead; Persian; Vegetarian
    • Ingredients: Barbari bread; feta cheese; walnuts; herbs of your choice
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    • Categories: Canapés / hors d'oeuvre; Cooking ahead; Persian; Vegan; Vegetarian
    • Ingredients: Castelvetrano olives; walnuts; pomegranate molasses; dried mint; golpar powder
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    • Categories: Dips, spreads & salsas; Appetizers / starters; Side dish; Cooking ahead; Persian; Vegetarian
    • Ingredients: dried shallots; Greek yogurt
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    • Categories: Dips, spreads & salsas; Appetizers / starters; Side dish; Cooking ahead; Persian; Vegetarian
    • Ingredients: zucchini; yellow onions; cherry tomatoes; tomato paste; dried oregano; Greek yogurt; yellow squash
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    • Categories: Dips, spreads & salsas; Appetizers / starters; Side dish; Cooking ahead; Persian; Vegetarian
    • Ingredients: beets; Greek yogurt; dried mint
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    • Categories: Dips, spreads & salsas; Appetizers / starters; Side dish; Cooking ahead; Persian; Vegan; Vegetarian
    • Ingredients: yellow onions; ground cumin; ground allspice; Puy lentils; dry white wine; basil; parsley
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    • Categories: Salads; Appetizers / starters; Side dish; Persian; Vegan; Vegetarian
    • Ingredients: roasted unsalted pumpkin seeds; oranges; Medjool dates; orange blossom water; arugula; fennel
    • Accompaniments: Potato kookoo (Kookoo sibzamini)
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    • Categories: Dips, spreads & salsas; Appetizers / starters; Side dish; Cooking ahead; Persian; Vegan; Vegetarian
    • Ingredients: eggplants; tomatoes; pomegranate molasses; golpar powder; dried mint; cilantro; mint; pomegranate seeds
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    • Categories: Spice / herb blends & rubs; Cooking ahead; Persian
    • Ingredients: cilantro; mint; kosher salt; savory
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    • Categories: Dips, spreads & salsas; Side dish; Appetizers / starters; Cooking ahead; Persian; Vegan; Vegetarian
    • Ingredients: walnuts; verjuice; turmeric; cilantro; mint
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    • Categories: Side dish; Appetizers / starters; Persian; Vegan; Vegetarian
    • Ingredients: green almonds; green plums
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    • Categories: Appetizers / starters; Persian; Italian; Vegetarian
    • Ingredients: sour cherries; sugar; limes; baguette bread; feta cheese; pistachio nuts; mint
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    • Categories: Chutneys, pickles & relishes; Appetizers / starters; Side dish; Cooking ahead; Persian; Vegan; Vegetarian
    • Ingredients: eggplants; white wine vinegar; parsley; cilantro; mint; tarragon; carrots; garlic; black peppercorns; allspice berries; bay leaves; nigella seeds; coriander seeds; golpar powder; ground cinnamon; ground cardamom; dried rose petals; cumin seeds; mustard seeds
    • Accompaniments: Green bean rice (Loobia polo); Grean bean kookoo (Kookoo loobia sabz); Stuffed meatballs (Koofteh tabrizi)
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    • Categories: Spice / herb blends & rubs; Cooking ahead; Persian
    • Ingredients: black peppercorns; allspice berries; bay leaves; nigella seeds; coriander seeds; golpar powder; ground cinnamon; ground cardamom; dried rose petals; cumin seeds; mustard seeds
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    • Categories: Soups; Cooking ahead; Persian
    • Ingredients: ground beef; turmeric; ground cinnamon; ground allspice; dried mint; sour yogurt; jasmine rice
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    • Categories: Soups; Cooking ahead; Persian; Vegan; Vegetarian
    • Ingredients: yellow onions; jasmine rice; turmeric; red kidney beans; dried chickpeas; onions; garlic; mint; yellow split peas; parsley; cilantro; green onions; dried apricots; prunes; dried cranberries; raisins; beet greens
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Notes about this book

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Notes about Recipes in this book

  • Stuffed branzino (Mahi shekampor)

    • lync on January 29, 2020

      Excellent. I made a sauce of all the "stuffing" ingredients rather than go through the effort of stuffing and tying. Made a special week-night dinner in just 35 minutes.

    • lholtzman on November 19, 2019

      I did not have a peach/nectarine or basil so I subbed frozen mango for the peach and cilantro for the basil. Tasted delicious. Save some time by chopping all the herbs with the pistachios in the mini chop.

  • Dill rice (Sheeved polo)

    • IvyManning on April 23, 2019

      Does not work with CA basmati rice, not sure if that was the problem. Overcooked at 12 minutes, another 20 as recipes states would have yielded burnt mush. Don't use again.

    • rhughes24 on December 29, 2021

      Made this with aged Indian basmati rice and it came out perfectly. There is no such thing as too much dill! A nice way to add some extra flavor to rice.

  • Dill rice with fish tahdig (Sheeved polo ba tahdig-e mahi)

    • IvyManning on May 20, 2020

      The rice was very overcooked, but the fish was delicious. I'm not sure if grocery store basmati is the right thing to use, because it was mush following this recipe? What did I do wrong?

  • Rosé-dipped strawberry rose ice pops

    • SheilaS on August 07, 2019

      Delicious and a very pretty way to present popsicles. I went light on the rose water (the recipe calls for "a splash") and couldn't really detect it in the pops. I may try adding a bit more next time, though they were lovely as is.

  • Cabbage salad

    • southerncooker on May 26, 2019

      Not my favorite but it was still good.

  • Chicken drumettes kabab (Joojeh kabab)

  • Everyday turmeric chicken (Morgh ba zardchoobeh)

    • bernalgirl on February 15, 2024

      This seemed bound for failure but it was absolutely delicious. I added more water and cooked it covered, then thickened the sauce a bit at the end. I’d make a few adjustments next time: brown the chicken, then add the onions, add a tablespoon flour with the garlic, double or triple the water, and cook the chicken with the lid on. It may not be the way your Persian grandmother cooked it, but it would save watching the pan for burnt onions.

  • Cabbage farro

    • bernalgirl on February 15, 2024

      So good! Even my whole-grain ambivalent husband went back for seconds. The golden raisins wonderfully compliment the charred cabbage, and the whole dish is lovely with the sauce from the Everyday turmeric chicken from the same book.

    • Frogcake on December 29, 2019

      This is a fantastic recipe! So tasty and it comes together quickly. I didn’t have any basil so I added chopped flat leaf parsley instead. Leftovers make a very tasty and filling lunch.

  • Lentil and beet soup (Aash-e shooli)

    • wcassity on August 17, 2020

      Delicious! Surprisingly rich, lush taste. Used golden bees and chopped chard.

    • jenburkholder on May 31, 2021

      We thought this was excellent. Deep flavor, easy, healthy. Will likely repeat.

    • allisonsemele on August 11, 2021

      Delicious! As others have noted, this is a surprisingly rich tasting soup. Deep, healthy flavors. I would make this often if I didn’t find prepping beets to be such a pain! Had to make some substitutions/adjustments for what I had on hand: added three small grated carrots, subbed a diced potato for the rice, subbed garden kale for beet greens, and extra onion for the leek. I think this is a relatively flexible recipe.

  • Sardine fish cakes (Kotlet-e sardine)

    • jacqie on January 19, 2021

      made with rice and cucumber/tomato salad from book.

  • Baked saffron yogurt rice with chicken (Tahcheen-e morgh)

    • hirsheys on January 18, 2022

      I followed KarinaFrancis' example and made a half recipe in my pyrex pie plate and baked it for 1 hour. It came out with a lovely crust on the bottom and the flavors are lovely (the barberries are more tart than I expected, though I'm glad to have had a chance to try them.) My biggest issue was with salt - despite salting aggressively throughout the rice cooking process, I felt like the rice was under salted and wished I had stirred in a little in the yogurt stage. I'm not sure I need to make this again (I want to try other options and this one was a bit of a megillah) but I'm glad to have learned how to do it! Will definitely make tahdig again, for sure.

    • KarinaFrancis on March 28, 2020

      In a word, yum! Loved the chicken and the tahdig turned out perfectly. I won’t kid you, it’s a time investment but it’s worth it. I halved the recipe and baked it in a 24cm Pyrex pie dish, still using 1 egg in the base mix and cooked for an hour. I couldn’t source barberries so I subbed cranberries, which were ok. Served with a chopped Persian salad and yogurt.

    • mackerman on March 10, 2023

      Loved this recipe, made it as is and everyone loved it.

  • Zucchini kookoo (Kookoo kadoo)

    • Yildiz100 on June 20, 2020

      I needed only 1 tsp salt for the zucchini and an additional half for the mix, so use caution before adding the full 2.25 tsp. I didn't like the barberries here. I can't decide if it is just personal taste, a bad combo of flavors, or if it was just too many. This kookoo is much more heavily spiced than most zucchini kookoo and I am not convinced it works. The expensive saffron and rose disappeared under the cinnamon so not the best use of them. Next time I would use a simpler more traditional recipe.

    • MsMonsoon on October 30, 2021

      Have been wanting to make this for a long time because I was intrigued by the barberries, rose, and list of spices. Takes a while to squeeze the water from the zucchini and squash. Agree there is a lot going on here, and not sure it's possible to even taste the saffron, but I liked the dish. The orange zest is quite assertive, and I can see this being a great brunch dish. Just realized it's dairy-free, too. And how fun is it to say "kookoo kadoo"?

    • MissKoo on May 19, 2020

      A bit labor intensive but worth the effort. Intriguing combination of flavors, and an excellent dish for breakfast (especially for houseguests) or brunch. Leftovers hold up well. I've served it at brunch together with the Arugula Orange Fennel Salad (p. 54) and the Sour Cherry and Feta Crostini (p. 66). Do pay attention to author's instructions to use a glass pan. When doubling the recipe I had to use one glass pan and one metal pan. The ingredients stick tenaciously to the latter; even after long soaking it's hard to clean.

  • Fresh herb stew (Khoresh ghormeh sabzi)

    • PinchOfSalt on May 19, 2022

      It was quite tasty, but a real chore to make. Cleaning and especially drying all of the bunches and bunches of herbs took a lot of elapsed time. Finally chopping them in my food processor was the quick and easy part. This was my first encounter with dried fenugreek. The package that I purchased seemed quite fresh. The dried fenugreek itself was very aromatic in a mouth-watering way. It now has inspired me to find more recipes that use it.

    • ShirleyHarring on April 22, 2020

      Also works well with lamb or hogget chops left on the bone.

    • jbny on May 11, 2022

      Delicious! Made with beef stew meat. our local Persian market had a frozen package of the chopped vegetable/herb combo. Saved a lot of work.

    • JulieCruz on September 07, 2019

      Wonderful stew! Do not skimp on the fresh herbs, he just used the term "bunches" and don't go by the supermarket bunches. I went to my International fresh market and the bunches there were about 3 times as large, that's what I used. Don't do it without the dried limes, I think it is a big part of the taste that you can't get from adding lime juice.

    • allisonsemele on March 01, 2021

      Made a half recipe--very good, reminded me a little bit of palak paneer with the greens and dried fenugreek. Liked the celery stew from this book slightly better, and it came together quicker.

  • Sour chicken stew (Khoresh morgh-e torsh)

    • Omsafeeya on January 03, 2024

      Despite crisping the chicken thighs they were soft. I wouldn't repeat this recipe.

    • Etrnalhope on April 21, 2021

      Used previously chopped and frozen herbs. Delicious!

  • Green bean rice (Loobia polo)

    • ldtrieb on May 04, 2019

      Delicious, used left over rice. Love how each recipe states how to make ahead or how to freeze for the future.

  • Barbari bread (Naan-e barbari)

    • MsMonsoon on January 24, 2021

      Recipe worked great and this was the first time I’ve ever baked bread! I wasn’t sure from the instructions if you are to preheat the sheet in the oven, like a pizza stone. I did one loaf on the suggested upturned baking sheet preheated on the bottom rack. But the loaf done right on a (non-preheated) baking sheet on the middle rack was just as good. Didn’t have nigella seeds so I used poppy seeds with the sesame, and added a sprinkling of sea salt.

    • rhughes24 on December 29, 2021

      This is a great bread for dipping into all kinds of mezze. Has a nice crunch and sheen from the wash and seeds. Freezes well too. I bake on a preheated pizza stone.

  • Vegetarian apple carrot stew (Khoresh seeb-o havij)

    • MsMonsoon on January 10, 2021

      Delicious. Uses many spices. I was expecting a thinner soup, low-calorie, but the recipe only calls for 1.5 cups of water, so it’s a quite hearty stew and would be good with rice like another reviewer recommends but is quite filling on its own. It’s also vegan if you don’t cook the optional raisins in butter.

    • jenburkholder on September 15, 2020

      Yum. Perfect for winter - warm, tart, cozy. I added more chickpeas than called for and served over brown rice.

    • Etrnalhope on January 20, 2021

      Added an extra small onion because I didn't have leeks, but it was still really tasty. Raisins are optional, but I found that extra sweet helps round out the dish. Went well with the lentils, rice, and dried fruits dish also in the same book.

  • Steamed Persian rice with tahdig (Chelo ba tahdig)

    • MsMonsoon on October 30, 2021

      I've always been intimidated by tahdig and rice in general, but his was my first tahdig attempt and it worked! I almost gave up after soaking the rice because I realized I didn't have a 5L nonstick pot. I ended up using my 3.5L Le Creuset and making the rice in two batches. I was nervous about not having the recommended nonstick pot, but I had very little sticking! For the first batch I made the standard recipe, and for the second I used the yogurt tahdig method. Both were great. The rice is fluffy, grains are separate, and the tahdig was perfectly crunchy. (The yogurt batch was crunchier and stuck a little more which was counter to what is said in the book.) Will probably make 1/2 or 2/3 the recipe next time as the full batch (3 cups of uncooked rice) makes a lot.

  • Lentil rice (Adas polo)

    • MsMonsoon on October 20, 2020

      Delicious! Uses 3 pots on the stove but recipe is pretty easy. I love the fruits and cinnamon with the savory lentils, rice and cumin. I may increase the onions next time just because I love them. I used pre-ground saffron but the book recommends grinding saffron threads yourself. I was glad the recipe says you can cook the rice in water instead of the chicken stock, so it’s vegetarian-friendly.

  • Butternut squash soup

    • MsMonsoon on February 22, 2021

      Love this soup. I’ve probably made it 4 times in the last 4 months. Super healthy, easy, vegan, and very little fat.

    • jenburkholder on December 28, 2021

      Quite tasty. I had a roasted squash, so used that instead. Needs a bit of acid at the end, I used pomegranate molasses.

  • Barley and lentil soup (Soup-e jo ba adas)

    • MsMonsoon on January 02, 2021

      Lovely, healthy, hearty vegan soup with an interesting mild tang from dried limes. The barley and lentils were perfectly done at the cooking times listed in the recipe. Used a 5.5 litre dutch oven; a 3.5 one would have been a bit too small.

  • Quince and labneh tart

    • MsMonsoon on January 07, 2024

      Interesting, rather filling and healthy for a dessert. Used store-bought pie dough but made my own labneh over two days (yogurt in kitchen towel, tied up and suspended over a bowl in the fridge). Rose water and cardamom flavor was faint so I may increase next time.

    • rhughes24 on December 29, 2021

      I skipped the quinces, if memory serves, and paired this with the sour cherry compote from earlier in the book. I thought the rosewater would be overpowering, but it was not. I made a full meal from the cookbook for a dinner party and this dessert complemented the rest of the dishes perfectly.

  • Sour cherry and feta crostini

    • Jviney on March 01, 2020

      Outstanding. Covered all the bases: pretty on the plate, delicious to eat, easy to put together. Sour cherries aren’t in season and we aren’t in a great area for them even when they are. I bought sour cherries in light syrup from the Mediterranean market, and then proceeded with the preserves recipe using half the sugar. Perfect aroma and taste of rose water. Will make again soon.

    • MissKoo on May 19, 2020

      This is a beautiful recipe. Wonderful eye appeal and flavors -- the rose water does not dominate but provides a lovely flavor note in the background. I pick and freeze my own sour cherries which makes this an easy last minute appetizer. This is especially pretty to serve around Christmas with the red cherries and the green of the mint and pistachios. Good for small cocktail and finger food gatherings too.

  • Meat and potato patties (Oven-baked kotlet)

    • Jviney on March 01, 2020

      I liked these. Perfect for book club - the early assembly and chilling time is helpful. Crunchy and flavorful.

  • Summer squash yogurt dip (Borani-yeh kadoo)

    • lholtzman on November 17, 2019

      Also great as a side dish.

    • Riya08 on April 14, 2021

      Fantastic recipe. Keeps well also, and enjoyed as both a dip/app and a side dish!

  • Smoky eggplant pomegranate dip (Nazkhatoun)

    • lholtzman on November 17, 2019

      I like the sweet and sour taste of this dip. First time trying Golpar and I’m not sure I love it. Definitely a distinctive taste. Although the dish was easy, it definitely took a lot of time. You can freeze it. I enjoyed spread on pita.

  • Walnut verjuice dip (Seerabeh)

    • lholtzman on November 17, 2019

      So good and super easy.

  • Vegetarian mint and parsley stew (Khoresh na'na jafari)

    • jenburkholder on October 25, 2021

      Very nice stew that I've now made a couple times, though never with artichoke hearts (don't care for them). The first time I used kale, and the second I used bell pepper, but honestly I think you could use anything that isn't too strongly flavored, so as not to overpower the herbs. Such a simple stew, but much more than the sum of its parts.

  • Sole in parchment paper with Drew's oven fries

    • jenburkholder on December 21, 2021

      Only made the fries. They were very good, ate with yogurt sauce.

  • Roasted dill salmon

    • jenburkholder on December 21, 2021

      This was fine but not exciting. We made a yogurt sauce and it needed it. Wouldn't repeat.

  • Roasted okra (Bamiyeh)

    • jenburkholder on August 02, 2020

      As okra non-lovers, I can’t claim this method was a revelation. However, it was miles above wetter styles, and the two dipping sauces were tasty.

  • Sumac cauliflower

    • jenburkholder on August 04, 2020

      I love both sumac and cauliflower, but this dish felt like it was missing something. Okay as a side, but probably won’t make again.

  • Potato kookoo (Kookoo sibzamini)

    • jenburkholder on April 01, 2022

      We enjoyed these. They’re exactly what they sound like - lightly flavored potato and egg patties. Don’t omit the yogurt. We won’t be running to make these again, but they were good.

  • Celery stew (Khoresh karafs)

    • allisonsemele on February 18, 2021

      I made this dish because it was popular with a cookbook group--delicious and easy! Made no changes apart from dialing back on the salt a bit. Served with the suggested rice and yogurt dip and it all went together extremely well. This would be a good dish for company--the prep is quick, but it takes a bit to stew, giving you time to throw together other dishes.

    • allisonsemele on March 28, 2022

      I made this again using ~1.5lbs of chicken without increasing the other ingredients, and surprise! it was not as good, though still tasty. It is the seemingly absurd quantities of green stuff--celery, mint, parsley--that make this dish, so don't cut back.

  • Spicy tamarind fish and herb stew (Ghalieh mahi)

    • allisonsemele on March 09, 2021

      Fantastic! Also much quicker than the other stews I have tried from this book. I made a half recipe with halibut. Will try again with cod or shrimp. I loved the tamarind/cilantro/chili/fenugreek flavor combo.

  • Rice pudding (Shir berenj)

    • kkmatti on February 11, 2024

      Excellent rice pudding recipe. I really like the use of mixed sushi rice and basmati here. I felt the end result wasn't sweet enough to suit my tastes so I added a little sweetened condensed milk at the end.

  • Eggplant dip with kashk (Kashki bademjan)

    • rhughes24 on December 29, 2021

      Move over, baba ganoush...this is such a great eggplant dip, especially with the barbari bread from this book. You can sub regular greek yogurt for the kashk, but the kashk does give it a little extra something. If you can't find it, she has a recipe on her website which I have used: http://bottomofthepot.com/homemade-kashk/ I freeze any extra in tablespoon-sized dollops so it's ready the next time I want to make this dip.

  • Pomegranate walnut stew (Khoresh fesenjan)

    • rhughes24 on December 29, 2021

      This yields a ton of flavor for something relatively low effort. Perfect with basmati and a bit of plain Greek yogurt on the side.

  • Meat and yellow split pea stew (Khoresh gheymeh)

    • Etrnalhope on December 19, 2021

      Always tasty and hearty. Recently did it in an instant pot - turned out pretty good! Sauté onions, brown meat, then add all the other ingredients, minus the yellow split peas (and associated water and salt) and minus potatoes. Pressure cook on high for 30 min. Natural release for 10 min., then release the rest. Prepare yellow split peas and simmer until desired softness. Make oven fries. Probably not AS good as the original recipe, but much less labor intensive and still very good!

  • Yellow split pea and meat patties (Shami rashti)

    • Etrnalhope on January 20, 2021

      Subbed a little under 1/2 the yellow split peas with lentils because I didn't have enough. It still held together, but was a little soft. Really good with muhammara on the side.

  • Baghlava cake

    • s.shadan on May 15, 2023

      would need 1.5 x syrup.

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Reviews about this book

  • Eat Your Books by Jenny Hartin

    One of my top books of 2018 which delivers a glorious journey through Naz' Persia.

    Full review
  • Food52 by Padma Lakshmi

    ...a final product as flavorful and memorable as was promised on the page.

    Full review
  • Food52

    This one is powered by the recipes, which are appealing and approachable and alive. And I was enchanted with the results, which is due both to the cuisine and Deravian’s words.

    Full review
  • Food52

    Deravian really shines when explaining the tenets of Persian cooking. She shares the staples of a well-stocked Persian kitchen, defines the Persian palate...

    Full review
  • Food52

    ...introduces us to the Iranian home cooking she grew up on—with a dash of spice from her own journey and experiences, having emigrated to Canada and then relocating to California.

    Full review
  • ISBN 10 1250134412
  • ISBN 13 9781250134417
  • Linked ISBNs
  • Published Sep 04 2018
  • Format Hardcover
  • Page Count 384
  • Language English
  • Countries United States
  • Publisher Flatiron Books

Publishers Text

Naz Deravian lays out the multi-hued canvas of a Persian meal, with 100+ recipes adapted to an American home kitchen and interspersed with Naz's celebrated essays exploring the idea of home.

At eight years old, Naz Deravian left Iran with her family during the height of the 1979 Iranian Revolution and hostage crisis. Over the following ten years, they emigrated from Iran to Rome to Vancouver, carrying with them books of Persian poetry, tiny jars of saffron threads, and always, the knowledge that home can be found in a simple, perfect pot of rice. As they traverse the world in search of a place to land, Naz's family finds comfort and familiarity in pots of hearty aash, steaming pomegranate and walnut chicken, and of course, tahdig: the crispy, golden jewels of rice that form a crust at the bottom of the pot. The best part, saved for last.

In Bottom of the Pot, Naz, now an award-winning writer and passionate home cook based in LA, opens up to us a world of fragrant rose petals and tart dried limes, music and poetry, and the bittersweet twin pulls of assimilation and nostalgia. In over 100 recipes, Naz introduces us to Persian food made from a global perspective, at home in an American kitchen.



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