My love for potatoes has always been pretty strong. Mashed, scalloped, baked, roasted, and French, I didn’t know that this humble root veggie could get any better – that is, until I married a Persian.
Persians always seem to know how to take things to the next level. From the elaborate, poetic Farsi language (before saying goodbye, my husband will end any run-of-the-mill phone call with ghorbunet, which translates to “I will sacrifice myself for you”), to their dancing, parties, and picnics, Persians certainly know how to kick it up a notch. Food, and specifically the potato, is no exception.
Enter Persian kookoo sibzamini (say that 5 times fast!). It’s basically potato pancakes fried in oil. I didn’t even know it was possible to mash potatoes into patties and fry them! My potato world expanded when my mother-in-law made these for my homeschool kiddos for lunch one day. This was before I met my husband or even knew he existed. Looking back, I’m pretty sure my mother-in-law was strategic in making kookoo as a way to lure me into her family. I can’t prove it for sure, but either way, it worked.
The best way to eat these, according to my husband, is with fresh bread, tomatoes, and yogurt. It is popular for a lunch or a light dinner and is a favorite among children.
- 2-3 medium potatoes
- 1 tsp garlic salt
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp dried dill
- a pinch of salt
- 1/2 cup of cooking oil
- 1 egg
- Boil potatoes in large pot with skins until fork tender
- Dump water and allow potatoes to cool, then remove skins
- Grate potatoes into a large bowl using a cheese grater
- Add in garlic salt, turmeric, dill, and salt. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed
- Place potato mixture into the refrigerator for 10-20min to firm up
- Allow oil to heat in a large skillet
- Once potatoes are cool, add in the egg and mix with hands or a spatula
- With your hands, form potatoes into palm size patties and place in the skillet with hot oil
- When potato patties are golden around the bottom edges, it’s time to flip
- Remove potato patties from oil with slotted spoon and let cool