Persian Quince Stew (Khoresht-e Beh)

quince stew over white rice

Persian Quince Stew (called Khoresht-e Beh in Farsi) is a traditional Fall meal in Iran. Quince ripens in late September making delicious Quince Stew a truly seasonal dish.

quince and apple

Wild quince trees are found in the Caspian region of Iran and it is said that the juiciest and sweetest variety could be found in Isfahan. I have no idea where my quince came from, but judging from how many times hubby went for more, I would say they were pretty sweet as well. Quince was valued for its aphrodisiac powers and was customarily given to brides on their wedding nights. It is also used as a cold remedy. The seeds when placed in a glass with a little bit of water, make the water gelatinous. Once you drink the jelly water it  soothes a soar throat and offers some relief from coughs. 

 khoreshteh beh quince stew

Now let's get to the recipe - I hope you will like it! 

Quince Khoresh

Makes 6 servings - you will need:

3 large quinces diced                                   1 apple ( I used granny smith)

1 large onion thinly sliced                             1/4 tsp cinnamon

 1 lbs stew meat                                             1/2 cup sugar or 1 cup applesauce

1/2 cup oil                                                      1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

1 tsp salt                                                         1/4 cup fresh lime juice

1/4 tsp ground pepper                                    1/3 cup yellow split peas

1/4 tsp ground saffron dissolved in 1 tbsp hot water


1. In a large pot, brown the onions and meat in 3 tbsp oil. Add salt, pepper and cinnamon. Stir in 3 cups for water water and simmer for 1 hour. 

 2. Wash but do not peel the quinces. Cut quince and apple into quarters, remove seeds and then cut into cubes.

cooking-quince3. Brown quince and apple in remaining oil in a skillet for about 10-15 minutes, until golden brown. Add it to the meat and simmer for 30 minutes. 

4. Add the sugar, vinegar, lime juice, saffron water, and yellow split peas to the meat. Cover and cook until slit peas are soft.  

5. Taste and adjust seasoning to taste.  

6. Serve hot over white rice.  

I can not eat sugar and substituted the sugar with 1-2 small cups of apple sauce. Original quince khoresht does not include apples or apple sauce , but I like to add it for added taste. 

khoreshteh beh 

 If you make this dish, I would love to hear what you think of it. I also like to know if you have a recipe for quince. This is pretty much the only dish I know how to make using golden quince and it sure would be fun to try something new.  

quince stew plated

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