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I was eating at an Iranian/Persian restaurant and they brought a bowl of pickles to the table. Among them was the usual wild cucumber, green tomato, pink turnip, etc. but there were also several strange ones I had never seen before.

They were small, between the size of a cherry tomato and a small plum, with a smooth (not ridged) shape. They were round/oblong (again kind of like the above fruits). They had a very fine coating of fuzz/hair. The taste was not pronounced in any way (it tasted much like the other pickles). The colour was muted green.

I thought they might be gooseberries but the texture was a lot firmer than a berry.

Do they pickle greengages, or unripe plums, or unripe apricots, etc.? If so, does anyone know the Arabic/Persian/Farsi/Pashto/etc. name for these?

Thanks

  • 14
    Two quick questions: 1) Why didn't you simply ask he waiter? 2) Why didn't you take a picture? – Johannes_B Nov 30 '19 at 6:19
  • @Johannes_B Possibly because it only occurred to him later to ask? – Tomáš Zato - Reinstate Monica Dec 2 '19 at 15:16
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    @TomášZato-ReinstateMonica Correct. The meal was years ago. – WackGet Dec 2 '19 at 15:42
  • With that much detail, i guessed it was a recent event. You seem to have a really good memory. – Johannes_B Dec 2 '19 at 17:26
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I suspect that these will be pickled almonds. Almonds are a favorite ingredient in many middle-Eastern dishes. The green color and fuzz give it away, most other fruits like apricots and plums lack enough fuzz to be noticeable at the unripe stage and are very hard when unripe.

I found a recipe with this photo:

enter image description here

Are these are what you are after?

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  • This looks like it. I'd never have thought of almonds. Thanks. – WackGet Nov 30 '19 at 16:36
12

It's probably green almonds like bob1 suggested. We eat them raw as a fruit or they can be pickled. They are called Oja in the Syrian region عوجا.

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  • Thanks for supplying the Arabic name, مشكور! :-) Anyone know the Farsi name, too? – Sixtyfive Dec 2 '19 at 13:37
  • you're welcome. It's Chaghale in Farsi – tariq abughofa Dec 2 '19 at 21:47
  • or chaghale badoom – tariq abughofa Dec 2 '19 at 21:52

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