Borani esfanaj (spinach-yogurt salad or dip)

Yield: 6 servings

Measure Ingredient
1 Onion, chopped
4 Cloves garlic, chopped
1 To 2 tbsp butter
½ To 1 tsp tumeric
½ To 1 tsp cayenne pepper (or a generous dash tabasco sauce)
½ teaspoon Curry powder
1 teaspoon Cumin
¼ teaspoon Cinnamon
1 pack Frozen chopped spinach, defrosted, or 2 bunches fresh spinach,
Cooked and chopped.
1 cup Plain yogurt

This spinach and yogurt dish is Persian in origin, The yogurt is redolent with both musky and sweet spices complementing the slightly tart taste of the spinach. Borani Esfanah is enjoyed as an appetizer, side dish, or dip to spread on bread. Though untraditional, the hot pepper flavoring adds zip. Accompany with French bread, or pita; or, for a more tactile experience, tear off pieces of warm, soft flour tortillas and scoop up the savory mixture.


1. Saute onion and garlic in butter until soft. Add spices and cook a few minutes to rid them of any rawness 2. Mix in spinach, yogurt, and salt to taste.


Drink a slightly sweet Gewutztraminer or California riesling (German rieslings fade at the spicy assertion of this dish).

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