Fesenjan is a Persian dish made with pomegranate molasses and walnuts often served on special occasions such as weddings. I had a chance to try the dish at an area restaurant and wrote about it in this post. While Ravagh’s version overpowered me with it’s authenticity, I found myself craving that tangy combination soon after.
In the excellent cookbook “New Persian Kitchen” by Louisa Shafia, there is a perfect version that provides the same tart and sweet but without going overboard. The only changes I made were to substitute lamb for chicken; cooked beets for fresh; finely crushed walnuts instead of coarse. For a vegetarian version she recommends using tempeh. We tried one with tofu which was excellent – post coming soon. Next time I’ll probably use chicken because the lamb became too tough.
Note: Pomegranate syrup/molasses can often be found in Middle Eastern stores by brands like Cortas. If unavailable in your area, pomegranate molasses can made by reducing the juice and adding sugar as in this recipe. (Skip the lemon juice).
Note2: This dish doesn’t photograph well but is delicious.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45-60 minutes
1 lb lamb for stew
1 onion chopped small
½ cup walnuts, chopped fine
½ cup pomegranate molasses
1 cup chicken stock
1/2 cup chopped beets
Oil a pan and turn on to medium high heat. Salt the lamb and cook until browned on each side (6-8 minutes). Set meat aside. Using the same pan saute onions over medium heat until caramelized (12-15 minutes).
Add in the walnuts, pomegranate molasses and stir well. Next add in the stock and bring to a boil. Bring the heat down to a simmer and add meat back in. Cover and cook 15-20 minutes. Stir in beets and cook uncovered for 10 minutes.