May 07, 2010

Torshi-e Miveh & Sabzi - Maman's Pickled Fruit and Vegetables

I am a mother of two amazing daughters, which I am so grateful for, but I am also a daughter and on this mother's day, like many others, I'll be thinking about my own Maman, our strong bond and my many sweet memories of her. In my heart of hearts I remain that little girl whose mom would ever so patiently comb her curly knotted hair in elementary school (dabestan) before going to school each morning, no matter how old I'd get! She gave it all so selflessly without ever asking for anything in return and that's how she lived her life to the end. This was her motto, "Do your best. Give it all and do good at all times, unconditionally and with no expectations." I'm yet to master that...

This fruit and vegetable pickle is one of her many recipes. A hand-written copy of it was recently found among her papers, books and photos, which is quite unusual for she had never wrote any recipes down due to her extraordinary memory. I like to think that she wrote it down for me perhaps, with the intention to pass it down and share it with others someday. Now, for this Mother's Day, I would like to write about one of her favorite recipes that she had titled as: "It's food as well as medicine," (ham ghazast va ham davast).

There are many fruits and vegetables that are great for making pickles. I've written about Vegetable Pickle before, however this is basically a fruit pickle with the addition of a few veggies. I tried to be true to the recipe and to not change anything. Maman's recipe, however, called for some fruits that are not in season right now such as, quince and persimmon, which I skipped and used kiwi and green bell pepper instead. You can pick and choose among the abundance of  delicious, gorgeous and nutritious fruits and vegetables.
These days, discovering a good vegetable market is as exciting and as fun as going to a jewelery store or being on a treasure hunt!


Torshi-e Miveh & Sabzi - Maman's Pickled Fruit and Vegetables


Wash, clean and dry all fruit and vegetables in advance and then cut them into tiny pieces. I reduced the amount to make it simpler, so if you like you can easily double the amount.

1 large orange
1 large apple
1 large pear
1 large tangerine
1 mango (wasn't in the recipe but I had to add one)
1 large quince (not in season, didn't use)
2 persimmons (not in season, didn't use)
2 bananas
2-3 kiwis (wasn't mentioned in the recipe but I happened to have a few)
2-3 nectarines
2-3 plums
2-3 apricots (not in season yet, did not use)

10 dates, seeded and chopped
5 walnuts, chopped

1 medium eggplant
1 medium green bell pepper
1 small turnip (shalgham), grated
1-2 large carrots, shredded
1-2 celery ribs
1 cup of cauliflower florets

1 teaspoon black seeds
1 teaspoon crushed angelica (golpar)
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1 teaspoon dried tarragon
1 teaspoon savory leaves
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
1/4 teaspoon red pepper
Salt to taste

1 tablespoon tamarind paste
2 tablespoons crushed rock candy (or 2 tablespoons of honey)
3-4 cups vinegar, add enough to cover everything

  1. Place all the finely chopped  fruits, vegetables, dried herbs and spices in a large heavy-bottomed non-reactive to acid pan and place it on medium-low heat for 7-10 minutes. Turn the heat very low and simmer for 20-30 minutes until all ingredients are soft but not mushy. There's no need to add water, they'll cook in their own natural juices.
  2. Add walnuts,dates, tamarind, rock candy and vinegar. Mix well.
  3. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for another 10 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat.
  5. Spoon the pickles into sterilized canning jars (I used a 1 1/2 liter jar and a 1/2 litter jar)
  6. Close lid and let cool to room temperature.
  7. Store in a cool and dry place or refrigerate. 
This torshi is ready in two weeks and could be served with most Persian dishes.

I've never gotten used to the water bath canning method that is commonly used here. I still make pickles the old-fashioned way, the way that was done back home by my mother and my grandmothers without the water bath. But I do wash the cans thoroughly with soap and hot water before using them. For canning and sterilization tips please see the following link.

Enjoy! Happy Mother's Day!


  1. Can you tell what are these in Farsi?
    teaspoon coriander seeds
    1 teaspoon dried tarragon
    1 teaspoon savory leaves


    Happy mother's day!

  2. I've had Persian pickled veggies before but never thought to make them myself - this looks amazing and just my speed! Happy Mother's Day!

  3. Nastaran,

    1 ghashogh-e chai-khori:
    Coriander seeds: Tokhm-e geashniz
    Dried Tarragon: Tarkhoon-e khoshk,tarkhoon-e tazeh ham misheh estefadeh kard.
    Savory leaves: Marzeh, khoshk ya tazeh.

    Merci for visiting and commenting!

  4. OysterCulture, You are so kind with your wonderful comments. Thank you.

  5. What a lovely tribute to your mother! I am sure she is smiling at you right now, beaming with pride.

    I've never had pickled fruits...definitely adding this to my list of recipes to try!

  6. Happy mother's day to you too, your maman sounds lovely :) looks very pretty too :) .

  7. Thank you for sharing your mom's special recipe, it sounds terrific! Happy mother's day!

  8. What a magnificent recipe. The fact that it comes from your mother makes it even more precious. I am a lucky girl - my mum is coming to visit me soon, and I'm sure she'll love this recipe as she adores pickles, and she is always curious on new takes on food, so she's bound to love this mix of fruit and vegetables.

  9. Hi Joanne! Thank you so very much for your kind words.:)
    Peanutts, Thank you and happy mother's day to you too!
    5 Star Foodie, Thank you! Happy mother's day!
    Caffettiera, Thanks for the visit and it's so nice to see you again.

  10. Azita

    Thank you so much! This is a recipe I will keep in my files and use later. I have never seen one like this that uses so many fruits; it is wonderful, just like your mom was.

  11. Oh! What a nice recipe...thank you so much for sharing in it in such a nice occasion :-) I hope you had a nice Mother's Day.

  12. Just finished making this! I think it's going to turn out amazing, at least it looks beautiful for now! I cannot wait to dive into it!!!!


  13. Loved your post. What a great recipe and history behind it. I definitely will make it this coming weekend.