There's a well-known story about the Parsi settlement in India and their cultural absorption. It's been said that the ruler of Gujarat, Jadi Rana, was not very welcoming and was concerned about over-population problems. In a meeting with the king, the Parsi leader asked for a full glass of milk and a spoonful of sugar. Then as he gently added the sugar into the glass of milk without any spillage he said, "We are like sugar, we will only sweeten your country." The Parsi community blended and thrived well in India while it also maintained its religion.
Parsi cuisine, with its roots in ancient Persia, is a unique combination of both Indian and Persian style cooking. I had read about Parsi food while reading other food blogs over the past few years but it wasn't until I came across the wonderful book, My Bombay Kitchen: Traditional and Modern Parsi Home Cooking by Niloufer Ichaporia King that I became tremendously intrigued and decided to write a post about it. Her story and her Parsi recipes have totally won me over. Plus, I am passionate about all things Iranian even if it's a thousand years removed!
On a more personal note, one day, a couple of years before I was born my mother met a young Zartoshti couple with two adorable little girls during a sizdah bedar outing. One of the girls' names was Azita and that was the first time my mother had heard that name and decided she was going to name her next baby girl Azita. It took her months to persuade my father who had a very uncommon name in mind. I am grateful that my mother met that family before I was born and that she didn't waver under pressure.
1 pound skinless, boneless ground turkey
3 green onions, finely chopped
1 teaspoon of fresh ginger, minced
2 green chilies, finely chopped
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 large egg
Salt to taste
- In a large mixing bowl combine ground turkey, green onions, cilantro, parsley, green chiles, egg and salt to taste. Mix all ingredients thoroughly by hand.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Take a handful of the turkey mixture and form into a patty. Place the patty in the skillet and fry until brown on both sides.
Here are some Parsi food links that you might find useful:
Parsi Pakoras from The Traveler's Lunchbox
Parsi Tomato Chutney from The Wednesday Chef
Ravo (Parsi Semolina Pudding) from Fork Spoon Knife
Veg Dhansak - A Parsi Traditional Recipe from Veg Recipes of India