From the Land of Nightingales & Roses

Obviously, I am in a Persian state of mind today, earlier I published a promotion for Bottom of the Pot and this afternoon I have From the Land of Nightingales and Roses: Recipes from the Persian Kitchen by Maryam Sinaiee to share with you. Perhaps my escaping to Persian cuisine has to do with the bomb cycle blizzard we experienced in Colorado yesterday. But, more likely it is that I am drawn to books that bring the other side of the world to my kitchen.

In From the Land of Nightingales and Roses, Iranian food blogger and home cook, Maryam Sinaiee, takes us through a full year in the Persian kitchen. Each seasonal chapter offers up delicious recipes alongside insights into the festivals, traditions and rituals that color day-to-day life in this region. From spring through to winter, Maryam offers the reader a true taste of real Persian cooking.

Do we need another Persian cookbook? Yes, we do. Each book in my library that pertains to this area of the world is uniquely special as it delivers that author’s voice and recipes. Some of those recipes have been handed down through the generations. Often, the authors write that they learned to cook at an early age with a group of women that consists of both family and friends. I love that aspect of their story. And often times, there are plenty of dishes that are new to me. For instance, Ghōttāb, almond turnovers, is included in this title and not in another Persian cookbook on my bookshelf. 

The photography in From the Land of Nightingales and Roses is stunning, the recipes interesting and approachable, and we have the bonus of measurements being given in both weight and volume. Special thanks to Interlink Books for sharing the recipe below with our members and for providing two copies of this title in our giveaway found at the end of this article. 

Eshkaneh-ye Keshteh
Apricot and Poached Egg Soup
Add this recipe to your Bookshelf (click the blue +Bookshelf button).

You will find variations of this quick, rustic soup being made all over Iran. In the old days in winter there was very little fresh produce available, so nuts and dried fruits such as apricots, peaches, plums, raisins, and dates featured heavily in soups and stews.

This soup is generally either thickened or finished with eggs, but feel free to make yours without; it will still be delicious. It’s best to use lavāsh for the “croutons” in this soup, but broken matzo or even Sicilian carta di musica make excellent substitutes. Add the torn or broken bread to the soup in small amounts so it doesn’t get too soggy.


  • 12 dried apricots
  • 3½ tablespoons (1¾ oz/50 g) butter
  • 2 onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons dried mint
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 6 cups (1½ liters) water
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 4 small eggs
  • Pinch of sugar, to taste (optional)
  • A few mint leaves, to garnish
  • Flatbread, to serve

Put the apricots in a bowl, cover with hot water, and leave to soak for about an hour until soft. If your apricots are already quite soft you can skip this stage.

Melt the butter over medium heat and sauté the onions until lightly browned. Add the turmeric, flour, and dried mint and cook, stirring, for a couple of minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and cook for a minute. Add the water and the drained apricots and bring to a boil. Lower the heat, then cover and simmer for 20 minutes or until the onions and apricots are very soft and the soup has thickened a little. Season well with salt and pepper.

Lower the heat as much as you can so the soup is no longer bubbling. Break one egg into a cup and gently slide it into the soup. Repeat with the rest of the eggs. Simmer without stirring until the eggs are almost set, then cover the saucepan and cook gently for 10-15 minutes until the eggs are cooked through.

Place an egg in each serving bowl and cover with the broth. Garnish with a few mint leaves and serve with some torn flatbread on top and plenty of sabzī khordan (page 98 – greens and herbs).

Recipe from From the Land of Nightingales & Roses, published by Interlink Books, recipe copyright © Maryam Sinaiee, 2018


The publisher is offering two copies of this book to EYB Members in the US. One of the entry options is to answer the following question in the comments section of this blog post.

Which recipe in the index would you try first?

Please note that you must be logged into the Rafflecopter contest before posting or your entry won’t be counted. For more information on this process, please see our step-by-step help post and this forum post. Once you log in and enter your member name you will be directed to the next entry option – the blog comment. After that, there are additional options that you can complete for more entries.

Be sure to check your spam filters to receive our email notifications. Prizes can take up to 6 weeks to arrive from the publishers. If you are not already a Member, you can join at no cost. The contest ends at midnight on May 3rd, 2019.

Post a comment


  • Dewnie  on  March 14, 2019

    Rice with lamb and pomegranate

  • sarahawker  on  March 14, 2019

    Chicken in orange and saffron sauce

  • amyz218  on  March 14, 2019

    Sweet and sour stuffed meatballs (Holū kabāb)

  • jmay42066  on  March 14, 2019

    Chopped tomato and cucumber salad (Sālād Shīrāzī)

  • braabpro  on  March 14, 2019

    Stuffed vine leaves

  • lauriesk  on  March 14, 2019

    Rice with lamb and green beans.

  • DarcyVaughn  on  March 14, 2019

    Northern-style stuffed fish (Māhī shekam por)

  • riley  on  March 14, 2019

    Chicken in orange and saffron sauce

  • tennyogirl  on  March 14, 2019

    Noodle, legume, and herb soup (Āsh reshteh)

  • Roxy12  on  March 15, 2019

    I would like to try the saffron and lemon poussin.

  • Lem9579  on  March 15, 2019

    Lamb and yellow lentil stew

  • vickster  on  March 15, 2019

    Lamb and rhubarb stew

  • Jglo  on  March 15, 2019

    I’d love to try the Ash Reshte

  • lpatterson412  on  March 15, 2019

    Kurdish Scallion bread with garlic butter!

  • lpatterson412  on  March 15, 2019

    Kurdish Scallion bread with garlic butter!

  • lean1  on  March 15, 2019

    rice with barberries

  • Blackeyedsusans  on  March 15, 2019

    Almond turnovers

  • parnassus  on  March 15, 2019

    honestly even the apricot and poached egg soup sounds so good

  • Ledlund  on  March 15, 2019

    Dumpling soup

  • kmn4  on  March 15, 2019

    Saffron rice pudding (Sholeh zard)

  • MarciK  on  March 15, 2019

    Beef and Peach Stew
    So many sound delicious and interesting.

  • LaurenE  on  March 15, 2019

    Rice with lamb and green beans

  • t.t  on  March 15, 2019

    Walnut cookies (Shīrnī gerdūyī)

  • nyprairiedog  on  March 15, 2019

    The noodle, legume and herb soup is one I would love to try

  • annieski  on  March 16, 2019

    Savory ginger loaves

  • Dannausc  on  March 16, 2019

    Beef and walnut fritters

  • CollageArtist  on  March 16, 2019

    Noodle, legume, and herb soup (Āsh reshteh)

  • mpdeb98  on  March 16, 2019

    Almond turnovers

  • Jnamdar  on  March 16, 2019

    Ghottab (almond-turnovers)

  • stigard  on  March 16, 2019

    Almond turnovers

  • matag  on  March 16, 2019

    Beef and walnut fritters

  • SusanMargaret  on  March 16, 2019

    Eggplant pomegranate and ealnut stew!

  • edyenicole  on  March 17, 2019

    almond turnovers!!!!

  • LeilaD  on  March 17, 2019

    Jeweled sweet and sour lamb!

  • ravensfan  on  March 17, 2019

    Layered baklava

  • thecharlah  on  March 17, 2019

    Kurdish scallion bread with brown butter (Kalāneh)

  • leilx  on  March 20, 2019

    Eggplant and yogurt salad and also peach pickle

  • NaomiH  on  March 21, 2019

    Persian Jewish chicken dumplings (Gondī)

  • kitchen_chick  on  March 22, 2019

    Rice with sour cherries

  • RSW  on  March 24, 2019

    Saffron and lemon poussin kebabs (Jūjeh kabāb-e bā ostokhuūn)

  • JenjiRM  on  March 25, 2019

    Herbed meatballs and ALL of the accompaniments! WOW!

  • jezpurr  on  March 26, 2019

    I'm not sure which recipe from the index!!!^_^ I do know I'm very interested in the many Lamb Stews and the Bread recipes!!!^_^

  • popoff  on  March 26, 2019

    Caramelized almond praline

  • jennifersbrown  on  March 28, 2019

    Caramelized almond praline

  • ebs  on  March 28, 2019

    Flatbread 2

  • Zaira  on  March 29, 2019

    Eggplant and kashk with crispy garlic and walnuts

  • banba1  on  April 3, 2019

    Beef and walnut fritters

  • ktcupcake  on  April 5, 2019

    Lamb and rhubarb stew would be my first choice to make.

  • dtremit  on  April 7, 2019

    I know it's the first in the index — but rhubarb, onion, and egg soup sounds too intriguing not to try!

  • auntietina  on  April 13, 2019

    Rosewater ice cream with pistachios

  • liasim  on  April 14, 2019

    Rose water ice cream with pistachios

  • Avrlind  on  April 14, 2019

    Rice with lamb and pomegranate Or the rose water ice cream.

  • RickPearson54  on  April 20, 2019

    dumpling soup

  • BethPrice  on  April 21, 2019

    Apricot and Poached Egg soup

  • Jenamarie  on  April 21, 2019

    Caramelized almond praline (Sōhān asalī)

  • rashaye  on  April 21, 2019

    Ash reshteh, noodle soup please!

  • Sfgordon  on  April 23, 2019

    Grilled fish with sumac (Māhī bā somāgh)

  • jenmatt  on  April 23, 2019

    Persian Jewish chicken dumplings

  • EmilyR  on  April 24, 2019

    Rosewater marzipan (Tūt)

  • WCchopper  on  April 25, 2019

    I have to say, lamb and okra stew has my name written all over it

  • AnnaZed  on  April 25, 2019

    Kurdish scallion bread with brown butter (Kalāneh)

  • hibeez  on  April 27, 2019

    Lamb and rhubarb stew – because it's rhubarb season!

  • Nancith  on  April 27, 2019

    Beans with garlic and eggs–an interesting combination

  • fbrunetti  on  April 28, 2019

    Stuffed leg of lamb with yogurt and saffron

  • lgroom  on  May 2, 2019

    Saffron and lemon poussin

  • hrk  on  May 2, 2019

    Kurdish scallion bread with brown butter

  • Amdona  on  May 2, 2019

    Chia pudding

  • Mtetpon  on  May 3, 2019

    Baklava a family favorite

Seen anything interesting? Let us know & we'll share it!