Practice English Speaking&Listening with: Ash-e Reshteh, an Iconic Persian Dish

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Hey, it's Farideh. we're back in my apartment,

and today we're going to make an iconic Persian dish

called Ash-e Reshteh.

Ash-e in Farsi means soup, and reshteh is the noodles.

The soup is thickened with three kinds of beans

as well as green lentils.

It's filled with herbs, spinach, scallions.

There are four different kinds of garnishes

that you're putting on this. You got caramelized onions.

We got crispy garlic, we've got the kashk

and we've got the mint oil, like, damn, damn,

it's pretty good.

So, we're going to start cutting up our onions

and caramelizing them.

Can you see how my table just shakes so badly now?

This piece of junk. I need to get a new table.

I probably could just use my tools.

The funny thing is I have a toolset,

and it's pink because I'm a girl.

First of all, it's this little tiny suitcase.

[ Laughs ]

The best part is the little tiny, cute hammer in it, too.

Like, this is what we're working with here.

So maybe later I'll pull out these tools

and fix this old butcher block.

We're going to go back to our onions.

Everybody says that if I light a candle,

I won't cry from the onion. Should I do that?

Yeah, I do. Watch this.

My candelabra. [ Laughs ]

If this helps, I'm literally going to be blown away.

Isn't this lovely?

I don't know who told me to light a candle,

but we're going to go big

and light three and see how this works.

My knife, just FYI, I sharpened it

right before I started, so it's not my knife.

Obviously, the candles aren't helping.

Someone else said you could put a spoon in your mouth.

Should I put a spoon in my mouth while I do this?

I'm going to get a spoon as well.

Now I can't talk, but at least I won't cry.

Oh, I'm crying a little bit.

I am crying, but also I think it's because

that one -- I got to the one onion

and I think it's just like this one strong onion in the bunch.

[ Groans ]

Right at the end I started to cry a little bit,

but that was a pretty good to run.

Oh, mama, I'm really going for it now.

Okay, well, one candle went out. The spoon helps.

Rinsing My knife was -- definitely helped.

Well, now I just have to do them all all the time.

Oh, maybe like the candle and then breath in the smoke.

That kind of helped a little bit.

Okay, back to our bullshit, okay? Let's do this.

We're going to caramelized our onions in this is pot.

This is going to be the same pot that I use

for my soup, my ash'e.

We've got about a quarter cup of canola oil here,

vegetable oil, a neutral oil.

Caramelized onions is a slower process.

It doesn't happen in 10 minutes.

It's going to take about 40 minutes to do this.

So I'm going to start over like medium high

and I'm going to lower the temperature a little bit

and continue to cook the onions,

just kind of scraping.

And now we wait, wait, wait,

wait, wait for the onions to caramelize.

So our onions are going, but what we want, like,

this is like browning our onions.

You want a deep caramelization,

and then we're getting some crispy garlic also.

The cool thing about doing the crispy garlic, yes.

You can buy 100 percent store bought crispy garlic

or you can also buy crispy shallots to put on top.

Some people don't put the crispy shallots or garlic on top.

I like it. I kind of like that textural difference

because the ash-e, the soup is so thick

and you've got all the beans and things.

I think that the difference in texture

with having their crispy onions and garlic on top

is also really nice.

I think what I'm going to do is break it up a little bit

so it's not completely, like, in little slivers.

So we've got some nice thinly sliced garlic.

We're going take the garlic in the back and heat up some oil

and start frying this garlic up, too.

We're going to have to use a deep fryer thermometer

to see how hot our oil is.

I'm just kind of heating up over like medium high right now.

And I can just kind of test. I put a little bit in here.

You see how it just sizzles right away?

The oil is hot enough, so we're going to put

our garlic right on in there.

Now, it goes pretty fast in there.

Okay, so that's pretty good.

Look at that. Golden, beautiful.

And it's going to keep on getting cooler as it sits,

and we'll be able to crumble it up.

Now, obviously, I love to season it with a little bit of salt.

Meanwhile, let's check on our onions.

And just remember when you're caramelizing onions to scrape

up, like, some of the brown bits that stick to the bottom.

I might add a little bit of water here and there

to help kind of loosen up some of the color

and, you know, the sugars.

Okay, the garlic looks so good.

Oh, man. It smells good. Tastes good.

It'll be an amazing addition to the top of our ash'e

once we're ready to eat it,

While our onions are caramelizing,

I'm going to go ahead and start prepping all of my herbs.

I'm really multitasking over here.

So we're going to use a pound or so of spinach.

We're going to cut this all up,

and then we're going to use three bunches of scallions,

a bunch of parsley and one bunch of cilantro.

Popeye would be so proud with all this spinach, am I right?

Let me start by saying also all you Iranian moms

and aunties and dads and people out there,

everyone has such different recipes.

I did all the research.

I looked to see what everyone else is doing as well.

Some people use dill in there as one of the bunches of herbs.

Some people don't use cilantro.

So I'm going to thinly slice my scallions.

So this is oftentimes eaten during the Persian New Year,

and a lot of food that we eat during the Persian New Year

is very symbolic.

Oftentimes they're full of green herbs and vegetables

because, you know, the Persian New Year

falls on the first day of spring.

And so the reason why it's the New Year then

is that it's new life.

Things are green, things are popping up.

It's brings luck because of, you know, all the green in it.

And then the twists and turns

of all the noodles in the soup are symbolic

of all the different paths that life can lead you on.

So eating this will often bring, you know,

you and your loved ones good luck for the New Year

There goes my table, shaking all over the place.

It was like an earthquake in my apartment right now.

My dad didn't make us when we were growing up,

but I feel like I was more introduced to ash-e

at Taste of Persia, which is like a little restaurant

that was in the front of the pizzeria.

Saied, the owner, He would make ash'e,

and I started eating it here in New York.

And I was just like, I don't remember ever having this,

but my my sister and I were talking

when we went to Iran, she was like,

"Oh, don't you remember? Auntie Shala used to make that."

And she's like, "It had that, like, delicious white stuff

over the top and all the noodles,"

and we definitely, like, ate it when we were in Iran.

My auntie makes the best one,

so I'm doing my best to replicate what she did.

Again, same thing with the spinach.

We can just cut off

kind of like the bigger stems at the bottom,

and then just mainly us the leaves, okay?

And again, the spinach is also like a rough -- a rough chop.

My spinach and my herbs are ready.

My onions are just about ready.

I'm going to add some turmeric into the onions,

and then scoop out half them to save them

to kind of garnish the soup with at the end.

I've got three kinds of beans here -- kidney beans.

We've got chickpeas and navy beans.

So, I've soaked them all,

equal amounts of all three of them overnight,

and we're going to cook them in the broth.

Yeah, and you could use just two of the beans if you wanted to.

You do not have to use all three, but why would you?

Use all three, okay? Plus the lentils, alright.

Because this is a recipe I'm giving you,

you should follow it, or not.

Do -- do want makes you happy.

Oh, these onions look good AF.

Scraping up all that good flavor at the bottom.

So we're going to add in our turmeric,

cook it for another minute or so.

We're going to set aside half to use for garnish later,

and we're going to keep on building our soup.

So good. -We love them.

To my onions that are in here with the turmeric,

I'm going to add my cilantro.

This is my parsley. This is my scallions.

I'm going to cook this until the scallions are pretty soft.

So it's going to take around, like,

anywhere from six to eight, maybe even 10 minutes, okay?

And you know me, I like to season everything as I go.

So I'm going to add a little bit of salt

that also is going to help draw the moisture

and help soften them,

and these are just going to cook.

And I guess a dream I'll drain my beans.

Whoo. Nicely drained.

This is cooking down very nicely as well.

Snacking cheese.

Snacking cheese while you make your ash-e.

This smells so good.

You can smell all the herbs.

You can smell the turmeric in there as well.

You're eating snacking cheese.

What more in life could you ask for?

Okay, so our scallions and our herbs are nicely cooked down.

So next up, we're going to add in our spinach

and let that wilt, season the old spinach.

The spinach is wilted.

We're going to add in all of these beautiful beans.

We're also going to add in these green lentils.

You could use like a brown lentil

as well, but these are really nice.

They're going to maintain their integrity.

So right on in.

Then we're going to add in our water.

We're going to bring this to a boil, cover it,

lower the heat to maintain a simmer

and just let this kind of cook probably about an hour,

hour and a half until the beans are tender.


Okay, it's coming to a boil. Beautiful.

We're going to lower the heat, cover it and let it simmer

for about an hour and a half until the beans are tender.

Okay, our ash-e has been cooking

for about an hour, hour and a half almost.

The beans are nice and tender, as are the lentils.

We are going to add our noodles or reshteh.

If you don't have these, guys,

they're just like enriched wheat noodle.

You could use something like linguine.

They're like a flat noodle.

I think fettuccini could also work in a pinch,

and they're going to cook in there for

12, 14, 15 minutes.

I'm just going to stir it as they cook in there.

You're gonna eat ash'e reshteh when --

during the Persian New Year usually.

You might eat this particular ash-e

when your friends are going on a journey or a family

is going on a journey, a trip.

It kind of wishes them well.

You usually eat it maybe like right

when they're leaving or a few days after

to kind of wish them luck on their journey.

Now, nobody is going on any trips any time soon

with the way things are these days,

but maybe all the more reason in case your family

does have to go on a little journey

to eat some of this to keep them safe from anything

and then wish them luck.

And while this is cooking,

we're going to make our mint garnish, okay?

I'm actually just going to use some of the oil

that I have left over from frying the garlic.

Just want to strain out any bits that are in there.

Just heating up the oil over medium,

and then I'm going to add my dried mint.

Okay, so the oil is nice and hot.

I'm going to add my mint right in there,

and we're just going to quickly move it off the heat.

That's it, and don't forget to keep stirring.

This is a thick soup, okay?

You want to stir while the noodles are in there

because, I mean, there's all these beans,

all this the lentils

and everything kind of thickens up.

And it's like any kind of soup, it'll stick to the bottom.

Now we're getting down to business, okay?

This is one of my favorite ingredients maybe of all time.

It's right up there with the old Dijon mustard, okay?

It's called kashk. It's a Persian-style way.

You can buy it online.

You could use -- I think some people use sour cream sometimes.

Some people use yogurt.

You're just going to want to thin it down.

If you want to keep it dairy free,

you could also use vinegar

because it's going to add that --

This is a fermented kind of product.

Vinegar will be a nice replacement.

So we're going to add a bunch of this to the soup,

and then I'm going to also usually drizzle some on the top.

So I'm going to thin this out a bit.

Thank God that you can order things online nowadays,

and online, baby.

The old World Wide Web. Thank goodness for that.

So we're adding in just a little bit of water to loosen it up

because we want to make it into something we can drizzle

over top of the soup at the end. Okay?

Alright. That's looking good.

This is nice and like drizzly now, so that's beautiful.

Where have you been all my life, kashk.

Put it right up there in the things

I love most in life -- Pete Davidson, Dijon mustard,

pizza, kashk.

This looks great.

So we're going to add in more kashk,

and we'll season it with maybe a little bit of salt.

And it'll be ready to go.

Are you ready? I'm ready.

We got so many noodles.

We're going to do some of these caramelized onions.

I mean, talk about a soup that has its garnish game on point.

We're going to do garlic on top, too.

We're going to do a drizzle of the old kashk.

Now, the oil.

I mean, this is truly a thing of beauty.

Whoo, whoo, whoo, whoo.

[ Laughs ]

Oh, man. This is so good.

I mean, you just feel like comfortable

and calm and happy and warm.

You know, we have, like, layers of different flavors in there.

We got the caramelized onions.

There's a crispy garlic, all the noodles,

the kashk, the mint, the herbs have been cooked down there

and the spinach, all those beans.

Like, this is honestly a bowl of goodness.

For this recipe and more,

click the link below, #cookmunchies.


I can't wait to eat this

I can't wait to eat this

Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah

Eat this, yeah

Guess what I can't wait for?

[ Chuckles ] To eat this.

- I can't wait to eat this

I can't wait to eat this

Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah

Eat this, yeah

Guess what I can't wait for?

[ Chuckles ] To eat this.

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