It’s rhubarb season! That means it’s the perfect time for Khoreshte Rivas, one of my favourite dishes!
This Persian lamb stew is made with mint, parsley, and rhubarb. It’s served with rice and yoghurt, and red onions on the side, if you like. The lamb is so tender and the rhubarb gives it a hint of sourness. Ah, we Iranians just love our sour flavours. Iranian or not, I dare you to try it; you will love it! My German wife does. Would you like to make Persian style rice with it? Find my recipe here. Alternatively you could serve it with flat breads.
A little disclaimer:
Good Persian stews are not made in an hour. They take time, care and patience to make. They are not difficult to make, I assure you can do it! The important thing is not to rush and give the flavours time to develop and the meat time so soften, so it falls apart in your mouth. This doesn’t mean you have to stand in the kitchen for 3 hours. Most of the magic happens all on its own in the pan.
You can absolutely put your stew in a plastic box in the freezer and eat it within a month or so. This is what I do. Even if I don’t expect any guests and just cook for my wife and myself, I prepare a large amount and freeze 4 of the 6 portions for the month ahead.
Either way your time is well worth trying this recipe, I promise. 😉
Total: 3h 15 min
Preparation (partly while another part is cooking): 1h
Ingredients (Serving 6 to 8 guests):
2 kg lamb shoulder
150 g beef bone marrow (if you can get your hands on it)
3 large bunches parsley (450g)
1 large bunch mint (100g)
5 stalks rhubarb (or 400g)
2 medium sized onions
3 garlic cloves
2 tsp turmeric
Preparation and frying the ingredients
1. Cut the meat into generous cubes (about 3 x 3 x 3 cm)
2. In a frying pan fry the meat in a generous amount of vegetable oil (5 Tbsp) at a high temperature to colour it nicely on the outside (it will have PLENTY of time to cook on the inside)
3. Once the meat has a nice brown colour all around remove it from the frying pan
4. Finely chop the onions and garlic (In Farsi we refer to this as piaaz-e negini. Wanna learn how to chop onions like a pro? Take a look at my quick video tutorial)
5. Fry the onions in the same frying pan and the same oil you used for the lamb. This way you use the flavours from the lamb, which the oil is now infused with. Make sure the temperature is not too high. You don’t want the onions to brown before they’re actually cooked. They should gently simmer until they are thoroughly cooked and slightly browned.
6. After about 10 minutes, towards the end, once the onions are almost completely cooked and browned add the chopped garlic to the pan and gently fry onions and garlic together for another 5 minutes.
7. Now transfer the lamb, onions, and garlic into a large pan. Add a generous amount of black pepper and stir.
8. If you have beef bone marrow add the whole bone to the pan as well. Alternatively you can use any leftover lamb or beef bones, but don’t worry if you don’t have any. The bones add to the flavour but the lamb, herbs and rhubarb already have plenty of flavour on their own.
Simmering the stew
9. Add 2 heaped teaspoons of turmeric and 1 litre of water (or just enough to cover the meat) and put it on high temperature to bring the water to a boil.
10. Once the water is boiling reduce the temperature to low heat and put the lid on.
Prepare the herbs and rhubarb
11. Remove the stalks from the parsley and mint and wash them. I use a large fine plasticcolander to wash my herbs. Afterwards I spread them on two clean kitchen towels on the kitchen table to dry.
13. Now skin off the rhubarb stalks and chop them into 4 cm long pieces.
14. Once the herbs are dry, finely chop them (in batches, because you’ve got loads). If they’re not dry you will mash them instead of chopping them and all their goodness will end up in your chopping board!
15. Fry the herbs in 3 tbsp vegetable oil on a fairly high heat. Be sure to stir regularly so they don’t burn. After 2 minutes reduce the heat to medium-low temperature. After a total of about 5 minutes in the pan they should have a nice dark green colour.
Add the herbs to the stew
16. Now you can transfer the herbs to the pan with the lamb stew and stir them in. You can also add salt to your liking now. Put the lid back on and let the stew simmer for 2h.
17. Fry the rhubarb pieces in a tbsp of vegetable oil for about 3 minutes. Put them to the side for now, you’ll add them to the stew later.
Prepare the rice
18. After the stew has been simmering for 1 h 40 minutes it’s time to make the rice. If you’d like to learn how to make Persian rice ‘Kateh’ style, click here.
Add the rhubarb to the stew
19. After the stew has been simmering for 2h add the rhubarb to the stew and let it simmer for a further 20 to 30 minutes.
I hope you enjoyed this recipe! Please let me know what you thought of it, and what your guests said if you were kind enough to share it with someone (often I’m not ;)). Leave me a comment below!