Fesenjoon (Pomegranate- Walnut Stew)

This is one of my favorite Persian recipes! :) I just love Fesenjoon with koofteh(meatballs). In my family it was always made with meatballs, though the majority of people make it with chicken.

Fesenhoon (ba koofteh)

Fesenjoon (ba koofteh)

This specific Fesenjoon recipe is with meatballs, but for those who prefer chicken you can basically make a few adjustments and use chicken instead.

Ingredients:
approximately .5 lbs ground beef
1 medium onion
3/4 cup finely crushed walnuts — I use a food processor to crush up my walnuts
3- 4 tablespoons Pomegranate paste (or molasses) — the more you add the more sour the stew will be
sugar (desired amount) — the more you add the sweeter it will make the stew
salt/pepper
turmeric
onion powder (optional)
ground coriander (optional)
1 1/2 to 2 cups water
oil
aloo khoshk (prunes) –I buy it from an international grocery store and keep them refrigerated

Fesenjoon (with meatballs)

Fesenjoon (with meatballs)

Directions to make Fesenjoon:
Before you chop up your onion to saute, take a grater (randeh) and grate some of the onion for your meatballs. If you only grate a bit of the onion you can also use onion powder for the meatballs. Then take the remaining onion and chop it up. Pour some oil into a pot and turn the stove burner on to medium heat. Allow the oil to heat up and then add your onions.

In a separate mixing bowl you will mix together the grated onion, ground beef, some turmeric, some salt/pepper, onion powder (optional), and if you choose ground coriander.

Once the onions are sauteed and tender, add the chopped walnuts and continuously mix. I sauteed the walnuts for approximately 10 minutes before adding water. Basically, the smell of the walnuts will be evident and you will notice the walnuts giving out oil. You don’t want to over fry the walnuts either. After you add the water, start making little round balls (meatballs) from the ground beef mixture. As you make them you can drop them into the pot. Once all the meatballs are formed and put into the stew you can add the aloo (prunes), pomegranate paste, and some sugar. I added 2 prunes, about 4 tablespoons pomegranate molasses, and 3 tablespoons sugar. With the sugar and pomegranate you get a sweet and sour type stew. If you prefer sweet add more sugar and less pomegranate and the opposite if you prefer the more sour taste. Depends on how you like your Fesenjoon.

Finally, cover the pot of Fesenjoon and allow it to cook on a medium or medium-low temperature until thickened…water should be evaporated. Fesenjoon is ready to be served with Rice :) .

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