First, the New Year. Today is the Persian New Year and you may or may not know, that Mr. Tony is Persian. People often look at me in confusion when I say Tony is Persian. They will say “oh, is he from Persia?” And, I chuckle. Technically, yes. But today we refer to it as Iran. Iran is part of a larger region that was known as the Persian Empire. And, until the mid-twentieth century, it was called Persia.
So, what is this New Year? In the Iranian calendar, the first day of Spring is the beginning of their New Year or “Nowrooz.” There are actually several different cultures that celebrate Nowrooz. For the Iranians, it is marked with several different celebrations or from my interpretation, a few weeks of parties. I mean Persians do things big y’all. You know the Indian wedding you saw of Nick Jones and Priyanka Chopra? Well, Persians do things very similarly. They love a great party!
I remember my first real “Persian” celebration was at our cousin’s engagement party. Tony and I had been dating for a few months and we flew to the Bay area for the event. And, y’all, I am not exaggerating – this engagement party was like a full-on wedding with beautiful style, food in abundance and lots of music and dancing. It was fabulous!
But, back to today. You will see pictures of the “Haftsin” in New Year’s greetings across the internet. I found an excerpt here that explains the Haftsin for us Americans 🙂 This is a display of seven foods beginning with the letter “s” and they represent:
- Sib or Apples for health
- Sabze or Grass for nature
- Senjed or Sea Buck-thorn for Wisdom
- Serkeh or Vinegar for Disinfection
- Samanu or Sweet Paste for Power and Bravery
- Sumac or Sumac for Patience and Tolerance
- Seer or Garlic for Stimulation or Contentment
There are also usually Coins (Wealth), a Mirror (Lighting), Goldfish (Victory, Exhilaration, Blessing), Holy Book (Wisdom), Eggs (Fertility) and more. Persians have this display out before and after the New Year.
Now, unfortunately, this Mama has only done the Haftsin once or twice for our family. However, I am finally getting with the program and we put it together yesterday. I love how it turned out.
So, what does that mean for the Afshary family today? Well, first I will be cooking up some Persian goodness – I may even go live later and show you how to do the Tah Dig. All you need is basmati rice, yoghurt, butter, vegetable oil, saffron and water. I wish my @ourplace Tahdig pan had come but alas, it has not. (By the way, the Always pan is on sale right now and you can get for 10% off – just click here and use code shopstyle10.) You can see my review of the pan here – this thing 3 months later is still the bomb!! BTW, I will get a small commission if order.
And, second, the really big celebration for us is that Bubba Joon is 101 years old today!!!! Bubba Joon has been living with us since August and he is a true miracle. Despite his hearing and vision losses, he is actually in amazing shape. As a matter of fact, his doctor wishes he had his blood work. We often ask him his secret but he just shrugs. From observation, I think it is genes, exercise (he was getting on the stationary bike up until two years ago), eating small portions of real food and enjoying a multitude of hobbies (painting, reading, hiking, backgammon, and more). Happy Birthday Bubba Joon!
Well, I better get cooking so to speak – LOL!
Sale No Mobarak! Happy New Year!