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Kitchen diplomacy: How Persian flavors are shifting attitudes towards Iran




Author, Yasmin Khan, plus a Persian love cake
Author, Yasmin Khan, plus a Persian love cake
Yasmin Khan/The Saffron Tales
Author, Yasmin Khan, plus a Persian love cake
One of the dishes featured in The Saffron Tales, without pomegranates! Vaavishkaa: Spiced beef with eggs and spring onions
Yasmin Khan/The Saffron Tales


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Pomegranates. Ruby colored and a little tough to crack open, but a staple of Persian cooking. The super fruit is also much loved by  Yasmin Khan, author of The Saffron Tales: Recipes from the Persian Kitchen.

"In Iran, you have this incredible scarlet, ethereal fruit that appears in the midst of winter and we use them in all kinds of ways in Iranian cooking.  Whether we cook the pomegranate molasses or whether we throw them on to salads. I've come up with many ways to use them!"

Part memoir, part Iranian history and part introduction to Persian cuisine,  The Saffron Tales is inspired by the many meals Khan has eaten during her travels to Iran to visit family and friends. Speaking with Take Two's A Martinez, she said the book is also designed to break down barriers: 

" As someone who grew up in the West but well aware of the normal stereotypes that Iran is normally associated with, I wanted to write a book that really celebrated the best of Persian culture, and food is a wonderful way to get a window in to a country." 

Click on the blue button to listen to the interview