December 09, 2009

Khoresh-e Beh - Quince Stew

I like autumn mostly for its beautiful color changing foliage, crisp weather and also for its seasonal fruits such as pomegranate, persimmon and quince. Quince is one of  my favorite fall fruits. Of course, quince is basically used in cooking and making مربای به quince jam and is one of those kinds of fruits that all  parts of it is edible. It also has a warm and happy color too. I'm so tempted to take a quince with me to the paint store in my neighborhood and have them find the exact matching color. In the spring I am thinking of painting my kitchen quince yellow if there is such a color.

Anyhow, for this dish after washing and patting it dry, you can just slice it into wedges and there is no need to peel the skin off. In Iran the seeds are also used for treating coughs and chest pains by brewing them for few minutes.

Quince seeds and rock candy drink

خورش به Khoresh-e beh is a very tasty dish and very pleasing to the eye also This dish is a combination of meat (beef or lamb), yellow split peas, tomato sauce, and quince.

Khoresh-e Beh - Quince Stew

Serves 4-6

2 pounds meat (lamb or beef), washed and cubed
4  medium-size quince, washed, cored and sliced (could be cubed too), slice right before cooking.
1 cup yellow split peas, picked over and rinsed
1 large onion, peeled and chopped
2 -3 tablespoons tomato paste
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon liquid saffron
Salt and pepper to taste
2-3 dried lemons (limoo amani) or juice of a lime
2 tablespoons sugar
A dash of cinnamon
2 cups of water
Vegetable oil

  1. Heat 3 tablespoons oil in a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. 
  2. Add chopped onion and cook until golden brown, add turmeric powder and stir.
  3. Place the meat in the pot and brown on all sides. 
  4. Add the tomato paste and cook for five minutes. Stir.
  5. Add the peas to the pot and give it a gentle stir, cook for 3-5 minutes.
  6. Add cinnamon, saffron, dried lemons salt and pepper.
  7. Pour water in the pot, bring to a boil, then lower the heat, cover and cook on a medium to low heat for an hour.
  8. Heat 2-3 tablespoons of oil in a skillet and cook the slices of quince for 7-10 minutes over medium heat.
  9. Sprinkle sugar over quince slices and stir well till sugar is completely dissolved. Set aside.
  10. In an ovenproof casserole dish, pour in the meat mixture, adjust the seasoning and gently layer the cooked quince slices on top. 
  11. Cook in the 350 degrees Fahrenheit preheated oven for 50 minutes. 
Serve with rice.

* I garnished the stew with some slices of a small and ripe khormaloo (persimmon).



  1. I forgot to say congratulations for your first year of blogging.
    I love quinces and your dish sounds delicious.

  2. Ivy, thank you so very much for stopping by and commenting on my blog. I'm so glad to have discovered your blog!

  3. Salam,
    I love your blog. Usually I call my mom to have recipes, but I'll for sure try some of yours. I like quinces, last week I cooked "tas kabab". If you know it, maybe you can add the recipe.

  4. Salam Haleh, Thank you very much. You are so kind. I like tas kabab too and I wrote a post on it a while back, here is the link:

    Noosheh Jan!

  5. This dish looks so delicious! Of course all the Persian stews are yummy, so I can't wait to try that one. I have never made a dish with quinces before. In Lebanon, we usually only make jam!

  6. I love your blog! Thanks for these cool posts.

  7. It would be great if you could suggest which veggies to use in the US for ghorme zabzi, not all the ingredients are available.

  8. tasteofbeirut, Thank you,we also make quince jam, it tastes fantastic and looks gorgeous too! hope you do try this dish.

    Maryam, That is so kind of you to say. Thank you.

  9. Hi Azita!

    I've linked to you at The Silk Road Gourmet ( and invite you to be a guest blogger at some point - perhaps with stories of a Persian or Iranian holiday (like Noruz . . .) and the food shared - or some other theme of your choice.

    The quince is a much underappreciated food in the US and is enjoyed all over Western and Central Asia.

    Thanks for a great recipe!


  10. Laura, thank you for the offer and the link. I visited your wonderful blog and left a comment too.

    Have a great weekend!

  11. Maryam,

    You are right! It's not easy to find fresh fenugreek (shanbalileh)and(tareh)here. I use dried shanbalileh which I buy from Iranian grocery stores. Other than that I use Italian flat parsley,and instead of "tareh" I use (piazcheh) green parts) only. I usually add a bunch of cilantro (geshniz) too. Some people like to add spinach.
    I hope you find this information helpful!

  12. I have never had Khoreshteh Beh, but I can just imagine how delicious it must be!!

  13. i love khoreshteh beh, my Parsi friend in Rome used to make it-she grew quince in her country home in tuscany. your dish looks beautiful, azita.

  14. Shayma, thank you. I love this dish too. Growing quince in your country home somewhere in Tuscany, it sounds like a very pleasant dream to me!

  15. My Persian Kitchen,

    It is delicious and leftovers taste even better! Try it. Thanks.

  16. Dear Azita, I made this dish, (we have similar recipe in Türkish cuisine)but I tried your version. It was wonderful. Thank you.
    See you.

  17. I just discovered your blog and is such a delight!!! Many thanks for posting these recipes...Cheers

  18. This is my favorite recipe. Soooooooooooo good. Love it. Thank you.

  19. hi, would you cover the casserole dish when you put it in the oven or leave it open?