Kuku Sabzi ~ Persian Frittata With Fresh Herbs

by My Persian Kitchen on March 17, 2010

kuku-sabzi1-custom

Today’s post is the last of the recipes for the traditional meal consumed for Norouz.

Kuku Sabzi is by far my most favorite type of kuku.  This dish is pretty easy to make and it’s so delicious!

Ingredients

5 eggs

1 cup fresh parsley, packed

1 cup fresh cilantro, packed

1 cup dill, packed

1 cup chopped chives or tareh

1/3 cup walnuts

1-2 tbsp zereshk (barberries), washed and drained

1 tsp baking powder

kuku-sabzi2-custom

Remove stems from all herbs.

kuku-sabzi4-custom

Rough chop the herbs.

kuku-sabzi3-custom

Toast the walnuts for a few minutes.

kuku-sabzi5-custom

Place eggs in a bowl. Add baking powder, salt and pepper. Mix well.

kuku-sabzi6-custom

Add herbs, walnuts, and zereshk to the eggs. Mix well until all nicely incorporated.

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Warm up a non-stick pan with some oil.  Place the egg and herbs mixture in. Cover and cook for about 20 minutes on medium-low.

kuku-sabzi8-custom

Cut the kuku into four pieces and carefully flip each piece.  Cover and cook for another 20 minutes or until kuku is cooked through.

Cut kuku into 8 wedges and place on a serving platter.

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{ 34 comments… read them below or add one }

Homeyra March 18, 2010 at 8:45 pm

My Dear Sanam:
I love your site. it is nice just like you. I wish you a very good new year and lots of happiness with your dear husband. Thank him for me for all the helped he did on our bazar.
Happy Noroz

My Persian Kitchen March 19, 2010 at 9:01 am

Homeyra Joon, thank you!!! Norouzeh shoma mobarak! Best of wishes to you, your husband, and your sons! Hope to see you soon!

Bria @ West of Persia March 19, 2010 at 1:45 pm

Your kuku sabzi is quite similar to my stepmom’s recipe. Good stuff :-)

Omid March 21, 2010 at 10:35 am

This recipe seems very similar to the recipe my mother-in-law (current reigning champion of koo-koo-sabzi) uses to cook it up. As you know getting a qualified recipe from a Persian mother is near impossible, so this is very helpful.

I would also add that this is one of the few Persian foods that is not only delicious warm but can be eaten at room temperature or cold which is why it’s great for picnics (with Hollywood Bowl / Summer coming up) or boxed lunches.

My Persian Kitchen March 21, 2010 at 2:34 pm

Omid, I agree, it’s delicious warm or cold, as well as sandwiched in lavash bread! Yum! I have never made it for our picnics to the Hollywood Bowl, but that’s a great idea. There are three shows that I am looking forward to seeing this summer!

Candace Hill March 26, 2010 at 5:10 pm

I really enjoyed making this, the first time I’ve ever put baking powder into eggs and loved the herbs. But, my cilantro doesn’t look like what you use in the picture. Mine doesn’t have stalks and looks a lot like flat leaf parsley. Is that a different kind of cilantro?

My Persian Kitchen March 26, 2010 at 10:13 pm

Candace, I have no idea why your cilantro looks different. Can you take a picture of it and send it to me?

Candace Hill March 27, 2010 at 3:55 pm

My cilantro looks just like this page on Wikipedia:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cilantro

Also, I’m cooking the barberries in rice tonight, following (almost) the recipe, and I cooked the berries in the butter and sugar. Should they also have been cooked that way for the kuku egg dish? We ate this last night and loved it.

My Persian Kitchen March 27, 2010 at 5:48 pm

Candace, interesting…I wonder why they are different. The ones that I get here are a lighter shade of green than Parsley and are completely flat. No need to cook the barberries in the butter and sugar for Kuku.

Vanessa Bahmani March 30, 2010 at 9:14 am

Just wanted to tell you that your blog has been especially helpful to me these last few weeks during Persian New Year preparations. I finally made kuku yesterday and was very proud of myself. I look forward to making more Persian Kitchen recipes. Thank you!

My Persian Kitchen March 30, 2010 at 3:35 pm

Woohoo Vanessa! You go girl! I am sure Payman was happy!

Shira April 11, 2010 at 7:33 am

I just discovered this website and I really like it so far. Just wondering, why does this take 40 minutes to cook? That seems like a long time for eggs….
Thanks!

My Persian Kitchen April 11, 2010 at 6:00 pm

Shira, it takes a while to cook because kuku needs to be cooked on lower temperature in order for it not to burn. Also, it is pretty thick so it takes a little while.

Shira April 12, 2010 at 5:51 am

Thanks for your quick reply!

jen April 22, 2010 at 6:53 am

Hi Sanam,
I really enjoy your site. I have made Koo Koo sabzi a few times before. I don’t know why I don’t make it more often, as it is a great “light” dish. Question: My mother in law adds lettuce to the mixture…I haven’t done that in years, but when I was learning from her all those years ago, she added lettuce, parsley, dill, and spinach. Did you ever use those herbs or veggies to cook your koo koo sabzi?

My Persian Kitchen April 22, 2010 at 10:35 pm

Jen, I have heard of people including spinach in kuku sabzi, but I had never heard lettuce before. What type of lettuce does your MIL add to it? I only use herbs as that’s the way I was taught to do it. :)

jen April 23, 2010 at 8:29 am

Hi..thanks for your reply. She uses the outer leaves of the lettuce head. I think she just wants to use them for something, so she adds them to the koo koo. Anyway, I made it last night (without the lettuce), and my kids LOVED it…I was surprised, because my 17 year old son is very picky…but, he said, “you should make this more often” . I was thrilled, as it is so easy to make, and healthy….thanks agian!!

Elizabeth Mansouri June 8, 2010 at 2:27 pm

I LOVE your blog!The pictures are fantastic and provide a helpful step by step guide for us “non-Iranians”! I just wanted to comment on your ingredients. The picture appears to show tareh, but is not listed as an ingredient. I have always added tareh or green onion to my kuku sabzi. Am I correct?

My Persian Kitchen June 8, 2010 at 4:46 pm

Elizabeth, you totally got me on this one! Thanks for pointing it out!

Giovannina September 17, 2010 at 4:06 am

Scrivo dall’Italia,
ho trovato per caso il tuo sito e ti faccio tanti complimenti.
Trovo le tue spiegazioni semplici , chiare e pratiche.
Ti auguro un mare di bene, continua così.

My Persian Kitchen September 17, 2010 at 9:36 am

Giovannina, grazie! Spero che continuerai a leggere il mio sito! :)

Kristinae November 8, 2010 at 6:50 pm

My father’s side is Armenian from Iran…we make this dish for Easter with smoked fish and garlicky yogurt…must be a regional tradition. We use lots of spinach and herbs, but no walnuts. My mother has opted to bake it instead of frying it, not only for health reasons, but the eggs don’t separate as readily. We also find it dangerous to flip…my auntie has the burns to prove it :) I think it tastes best the day after :D

Thank you for your posts…and for making my mouth water!

Nadja December 26, 2010 at 2:09 am

very interesting and easy to make.
Thank you.

Shaheen March 16, 2011 at 1:51 pm

I am looking for an easy, Nowrooz appropriate dish to make as an hors d’oeuvre for an educational event about the holiday I’m helping organize at my university. Since I will be in classes all day, I need to make it the night before. Would Kuku Sabze store OK in the fridge for 24 hours? Also, I will have to serve it cold or luke warm since I won’t be able to heat it up at the event.
If you don’t think it will work, do you have another suggestion? Thanks!!
Shaheen

My Persian Kitchen March 17, 2011 at 1:56 pm

Shaheen, I think that Kuku Sabzi is a great option. You can definitely make it the night before. I wouldn’t serve it cold, I would either serve it warm or at room temperature!

daniel April 20, 2011 at 11:25 am

hello.. just i want say thank you .. & i love persian food

Sarah April 6, 2012 at 12:34 pm

Wow just came across your site, amazing! i’ve missed my grandma’s persian dishes sooooooo much and reading about some of the dishes you have mentioned well brings back memories! Living in Iran and smelling the aroma and wow, now i can at least cook some of these, you have made it very simple to explain and show. thank you very much!
Merci

Alireza April 8, 2012 at 11:34 pm

Best recipe! Thank you very much!
A father who needed to make real kookoo for his children :)

Linda Lucy S July 17, 2012 at 10:19 am

I’m so glad I googled looking for Salad Olivia (Olivieh) this morning and found your website for that recipe, and this one for Kuku! I’m Armenian, born in NY, but my parents immigrated to the US from Iran in the mid 50′s and mommy always made yummy Persian Armenian (Parska Hye is what Armenians from Iran are called), and I remember so many of these dishes you are writing about when I was growing up. As I just wrote my sister Armine and some friends:
——–
OK, 2 recipes here from a site I just found this morning… a Persian gal who’s also here in SoCal like us, and sharing recipes in a blog. So interesting to read the many comments from readers or users of her recipes. Ar – I was going to copy the girls, but decided you can pass it on to your girls and me to my son (note, her girls are 17 & 23yrs old and my son is 21yrs old)

Both Ar and I love Salad Olivieh — that at the bottom of this email.
Personally, I know that when I was growing up, I would never eat KUKU with all those “greens” (ick!), but remember mommy making it along with a pot of boiled potatoes with skins on. I loved the small boiled potatoes. I remember mommy saying that the Kuku egg mixture had to be BEATEN BY HAND … not a mixer… (I think she’d use 1doz eggs in a HUGE bowl with a wooden spoon) and you can’t stop beating it till it was all light and fluffy & frothy, eggs with slowly added finely chopped greens, (remember, it’s a SOUFFLE) otherwise the eggs would just separate from the greens and lose all it’s pouffiness and “fall.” When I returned to NJ as an adult (31yrs old), I finally tried her kuku and it wasn’t bad at all. I think I did get mommy’s recipe for Kuku and others between ’89-93 when I lived in Staten Island and she was still in NJ. Of course, she never measured anything when cooking, and she was doing from memory with telling me apx portions (a capful of this, a coffee cup of this, etc). I never made it, but seeing this recipe, I think I’ll make it in memory of mommy (she died in Jul 2006).

I’ll have to see if I can find my handwritten recipes that she recited to me and I wrote down. Mommy would also add a touch of curry I think to KUKU, because mommy’s family was from Isfahan, that was on the Spice Route to INDIA. Isfahan seems to be the 1 city of Iran where cooks did use curry in many dishes and other Iranian cities don’t.

(ie – I love Khorasht, bamia especially, and I do as she did… add curry along w/ cinnamon, but again, cooks from other Iranian cities don’t add curry).

ps – Googling and looking for SALAD OLIVIEH (Olivia) and found this site amongst many other. Sounds great!!! I’m going to make it and check out her other recipes too!

http://mypersiankitchen.com/salad-olivieh/

My Persian Kitchen July 27, 2012 at 11:57 am

Linda, thank you so much for your kind words and passing MPK along!!!! :)

erica nassar October 19, 2012 at 1:49 pm

can you use any other nuts in this recipe or non at all? i am afraid with the berries it may become to sour without the butttery nut flavor.

My Persian Kitchen November 2, 2012 at 3:57 pm

Erica, yes, you can omit the nuts.

Deb November 20, 2012 at 9:19 am

I wonder if you have seen a sort of koo koo “done up” like a jelly roll? We used to be able to get it in our local Persian market, but they don’t make it any more. The “sheet” part is a thin layer of koo koo sabzi and the “jelly” part was a thin layer of either thick yogurt or yogurt with cheese, studded with pomegranate seeds. The sheet was rolled up like a jelly roll, which made a beautiful pinwheel presentation when you sliced pieces off of the roll. I am most interested in trying to reproduce the technique and the filling (assuming any koo koo recipe would do for the base…which it may not!!)

Thanks!

My Persian Kitchen November 20, 2012 at 1:00 pm

Hi Deb, I have never seen what you describe, but sounds pretty!

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