Koresh esfenaj has a hearty yet slightly sweet flavor. Unlike most American main dishes, Persian main dishes sometimes utilize fruit as a main ingredient; you may find the sweet flavor a little unusual at first.
Servings: About 4
Ingredients for koresh esfenaj
1 lb. chuck steak
1 onion, chopped
1 10 oz. frozen chopped spinach
12 pitted prunes
Lemon juice (to taste)
3 T. dried parsley
2 t. dried mint, crushed
2 t. turmeric
1 t. cinnamon
2 T. oil
Step 1: Cut the meat into 1/2-inch cubes. Heat the oil in a frying pan, and fry the meat and onion with the cinnamon and turmeric (salt to taste).
Step 2: Add 1 cup water. Add the frozen spinach, parsley, and mint. Simmer 15 minutes until the spinach is thoroughly heated.
Step 3: Add the prunes and lemon juice. Simmer until the prunes are plump and mushy (30-40 minutes).
Recipe © Nura Amerson 1991
One of my favorite Persian dishes, a drumstick stew, also features dried fruit (prunes and apricots). The combination of sweet and savory is quite tasty. In koresh esfenaj, I found that the stewed prunes were my favorite part of the dish. So, I’d recommend adding even more than the twelve that the recipe calls for!
For “meat” I used Quorn meatless pieces, which resemble chicken more than steak, and it worked quite well. I enjoyed trying a pruney dish!