How To Use Barberry (Zereshk) In Persian Cooking?

How To Use Barberry (Zereshk) In Persian Cooking?

Barberry is a beautiful fruit called Zereshk in farsi. The barberry plant has lots of spikes, which makes the harvesting very difficult and that's one of the reasons that it is relatively expensive. Iran is the largest producer of Barberry in the world.

Here are some of the health benefits of Barberries:

- Fights infection

- Helps with digestion and reduce gastrointestinal pain

- Has positive effect on blood sugar and helps to prevent diabetes

- Improves heart health

- Combats Metabolic syndrome

- Cleans the liver and Gallbladder

 - Rich in antioxidants and vitamin C

If definitely a super-food !

Barberry has sharp sour taste and mainly available dried and therefore before cooking with them, we first need to be re-hydrate them. It is them more commonly used to garnish rice dishes.


To prepare the barberries:

1- Place 1/2 cup of barberries in a colander.

2- Place colander top of a bowl filled with cold water.

3- Soak them for about 20 minutes.

4- The dirt from the barberries usually siesta the bottom of the bowl.

5- Take the colander out of the water and run cold water over the barberries.

6- Drain and set aside.

Barberry Rice Ingredients:

- 3 Cups Cooked Basmati Rice

- 1 Cup Soaked And Washed Barberries

- 1/4 Tsp Grounded Saffron Dissolved In 1 Tbsp Hot Water

-1 Tbsp Butter

-1 Tbsp Sugar


5 minutes before serving rice prepare this garnish:

1- Add 1 cup of cooked rice with half of your butter and saffron water in a bowl. Mix well until all of your rice turns to beautiful yellow colour and set aside. 

2- Melt the rest of the butter in a frying pan.

3- Add the barberries and sugar.

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4- Stir for 2 minutes until the barberries have puffed up with a bright red colour.

Please be careful to not fry barberries longer than necessary otherwise they can burn very quickly. 

Happy Feasting :)

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