hearty yogurt soup {ash-e-mast}: the mushroom soup that wasn’t

persian yogurt soup or ash

on making ash~a deliciously comforting and hearty yogurt soup:

the plan is to make a nice and creamy mushroom soup for dinner with the left over mushrooms from the ragout served at my dinner party a few nights ago. i even go as far as chopping the onion and slicing a few mushrooms before my mind begins to wander towards the fragrant bag of dried tarragon my mom recently brought back from her visit home. i briefly consider adding some to my soup before i find myself rummaging through  the refrigerator where i promptly find two nice bunches of cilantro, a bunch of korean chives (how good are those), and some flat leaf parsley. wow, who knew? all i can think of at this point is how badly i want (almost need) to make ash-e-mast (yogurt soup) the way my grandma made it: thick, hearty, fragrant, creamy, and loaded with tarragon. that is how my mind works- i just can’t help myself….can’t seem to stick to the (menu) plan most of the time! at this point, i have no choice but to make ash-e-mast. no spinach? check the freezer just in case. still no spinach. well, then, it’ll have to be a spinach-less ash. i say goodbye to the mushrooms (with just a tiny bit of guilt), and promise to use them soon in some sauce or other. out comes the dutch oven, a few grains of rice, split peas, turmeric. before i know it, i’m surrounded with the overwhelmingly familiar scents of {home}. and oh i miss my grandma so.

preparing ash-e-mast for 6-8:


yogurt soup

  • 1/2-1 cup long grain (basmati) rice
  • 1/2 cup slow cooking yellow split peas (lappeh)
  • 2 medium onions, thinly sliced and fried (see method for making piaz dagh)
  • 2 cups roughly chopped organic cilantro
  • 1/2 cup sliced green onions or chives
  • 1 cup roughly chopped organic flat leaf parsley
  • 3 cups baby spinach
  • 1/4 cup of fresh tarragon leaves (or slightly less dry tarragon)
  • 1-2 cups yogurt (european style) adjust amount to taste
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 1-2 tsp turmeric
  • sea salt & pepper to taste
  • 4-5 cups good (preferably) home made chicken/beef/or vegetarian stock (chicken stock or broth)
  • 3-4 cups water Continue reading
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irresistibly tasty (and light) mushroom soup

i often find it hard to get back to the regular rhythm of my kitchen after thanksgiving when what we’re really craving in the aftermath of the big feast and a day or two of leftovers (enough with the turkey, thank you very much) is simple, light food. by sunday i was looking for inspiration in my (slightly less crowded) refrigerator when i came across several packages of mushrooms i’d bought to make my favorite mushroom ragout as a side dish to the turkey (which i completely forgot about-ooops)-it was going to be mushroom soup, then. not a bad idea, since it’s finally chilly outside, and i had a big bunch of fresh herbs left over as well. my mushroom soup recipe is not only easy to prepare but includes only
a few basic ingredients. if you feel like a more hearty soup you can add barley, potatoes, or quinoa and leave them whole (rather than blending). this soup will make your kitchen (and beyond) smell so wonderfully warm and cozy you won’t be able to wait to eat it. it’s simply delicious goodness in a bowl.
ingredients (4-6 servings):
  • 3-4 cups chopped mushrooms (combination of crimini & white button mushrooms)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 tbs fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 tbs fresh rosemary
  • 2 tbs olive oil (or butter)
  • a touch of cream (2-3 tsp)
  • about 5 cups (more or less) good (preferably home made) chicken or vegetable stock (see recipes: chicken, vegetarian)
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
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