As a Persian woman, I am always finding myself in the kitchen cooking an array of cuisine especially Persian cuisine. There are so many amazing dishes, however; a lot of these dishes call for meat and/or fish.
As a lacto ovo vegetarian, I am always looking for ways to execute various ingredients into the cuisine without ruining the actual dish. Luckily, it is possible to enjoy your favorite Persian dish using various meat alternatives. Today, I am going to demonstrate one of favorite Persian dishes with a vegetarian spin on it.
One of my favorite Persian dishes is definitely Khoresht Bodemjoon, which is an eggplant and lamb stew that melts in your mouth. I said to myself “Although I know how to cook this using the traditional ingredients, is it possible to incorporate this dish into vegetarian cuisine” and guess what? It is very possible.
Vegetarian Khoresht Bodemjoon
2 Classic Eggplants
VegeCyber Lamb Chunks
(the whole pack)
1 Red Onion
2 Garlic Cloves
2 Tablespoons of Tomato Paste
2 Tablespoons of Lemon Juice
2 Tablespoons of Soybean Oil
2 Tablespoons of Turmeric
2 Tablespoons of Salt
1 Teaspoon of Nutmeg
1 Teaspoon of Cinnamon
1 Teaspoon of Clove
1 Teaspoon of Dark Brown Sugar
1 Teaspoon of Black Pepper
You want to first and foremost, prepare the ingredients because it makes this dish so much easier to cook. You want to begin by dicing the onion. The onion should be chopped generously. Sit them aside. Once you get this out of the way, you can start on your tomatoes. Dice the tomatoes the same way you prepared the onions. Add a little bit of lemon juice and add the tomato paste. You want to smash and chop the garlic cloves before adding them into this dish. Set aside.
As you continue, you want to peel the eggplant. You want to them slice it. The slices should not be chopped or diced in cubes, but cut into semi-thick portions. Prepare a simple marinade of a little bit of oil and some salt in a bowl and add the eggplant to it. The lamb should be chopped into cubes, but they should also be generous sized and not cut small or thin. Some amazing vegetarian alternatives to lamb include Vegetarian Plus’s Lamb Vindaloo, Viana Veggie Gyro Meat, and VegeCyber Lamb Chunks (which will be what I am going to use today).
In a cast iron pan (and if you don’t own one, any heavy frying pan will work) you want to add the oil, followed by the diced onion, salt, and black pepper. You want to also add the lamb followed by the tomatoes you prepared. Then, as you want to add all of the rest of the ingredients including the garlic gloves, lemon juice, turmeric, nutmeg, cinnamon, clove, and dark brown sugar. You want to cook on high heat for 10 minutes and then cook on low to medium heat for about an hour.
As we continue making the vegetarian Koreshte Bademjan, you want to start frying the eggplant. Grilling the eggplant is a great idea, so you have that option too. You want to add a little more lemon juice and a little bit of oil, followed by salt and pepper. I also recommend adding a little bit of nutmeg. You want your eggplant to have some flavor, as you don’t want it to be over powered by the soybean oil.
Once you have cooked everything, you can start plating your Koreshte Bademjan. You want to place your eggplant on your dish first. Two slices work amazing for every dish. As you continue, you want to take the stew you originally prepared with the lamb, onion, tomato, and additional spice mixture and apply it on top of the eggplant. You are done and have completed the vegetarian Koreshte Bademjan.