Torshi is one of the condiments, especially in Middle Eastern and Balkan cuisine. Pickling (the best translation for the act of making Torshi) is one of the long-term storage processes of the fruit and vegetables which puts the desired food in a solution of salt water or vinegar with a low pitch and has an acidic state. If the food itself has enough water, just adding salt is enough to make torshi. The pickling process took place to store and use the food outside the harvest season; and then people found out that it can be a tasty thing to have on the side with their food.
To make torshi, you first have to prepare your vegetables and fruits; then base on what ingredients you are using you’ll have to prepare the water. Sometimes it’s vinegar and some times salt and water. To achieve a better taste there are some spices and herbs to add to torshi; and in some cases you can even a little olive oil 1-2 hours you serve it on the table. The herbs and spices that you can use are the following:
Torshi is often made in homes in the autumn. And it is also sold by specialists and in supermarkets, and is served in restaurants.
There are many kinds of Torshi in the world; and we are going to introduce the most popular and common Iranian torshis. So keep reading!
If you like to try rare kinds of Iranian torshi, Aboo Jahl is a perfect choice! Aboo Jahl is a kind of very small water melon that originally has an intolerable bitter taste; but when you pickle it it’ll taste nice. If you couldn’t find this kind of torshi in restaurants, visit Tajrish bazaar in Tehran, you will definitely find some!
As it’s name presents, Bandari torshi’s origin is the southern cities of Iran. So the ingredients of this torshi are a little unusual and you can’t find them in most Iranian torshis. Ingredients of this cuisine are: Carrot, cucumber, eggplants, celery, garlic, tomatoes, cauliflower, small green peppers, tomato juice, pomegranate paste, tamarind and herbs like mint, coriander tarragon and mint.
To order this cuisine it is better to visit restaurant which serve southern food in Iran; or if you are traveling to the southern cities or Persian Gulf islands, you can find it everywhere!
Is it weird?! Well if your answer is yes we should tell you that it may sound weird but tastes absolutely delicious! Mango pickles are very popular in southern cities of Iran and we recommend you to try it with your sea food if you are going to visit those parts of Iran. You can also buy this torshi in malls and big supermarkets too.
Mango torshi is originally spicy; but if you are going to try the ones available in malls they are less spicy and some of them not spicy at all. The ingredients of this torshi are: Mangos, sugar, vinegar, herbs, pomegranate paste, date syrup, tamarind and garlic; but people add lots of pepper and a little turmeric to their torshi too! It’s called Chabahari torshi.
As it’s name presents, this torshi is a mixture of different vegetables such as: Carrots, Celery, Garlic, Onion, Cucumber, Peppers and Cauliflower pickled in vinegar and herbs such as turmeric, thyme and salt. This torshi is very popular in Iran and you can find it on every Iranian restaurant! We recommend you to try it on the side of Iranian stews and Kebabs.
A very different and unique torshi with a sweet-savory taste is nut pickles! It is a combination of different nuts such as almonds, pistachio, cashews, apricot leaf, cinnamon stick and cardamom nourished and sitting in vinegar. If you want a more sweet nut torshi you should add more apricot leaf but of not, put more vinegar in the jar. And enjoy!
Okra is one of the favorite vegetables is Middle-Eastern countries. There are many dishes that contain okra in them and now it’s time for pickling it! Making this torshi is very easy! You’ll just need to put them in a mix of vinegar and water and add some salt and herbs to it; then wait 4-6 weeks and it’s done! You might see some people putting green peppers in their okra pickle; this ingredient will give a spicier taste to the torshi and also you’ll have some pepper pickles alongside your okra too!
If you want my opinion, one of the tastiest combinations of torshi is olive and mushrooms. It has an amazing texture and tastes soft and nice. This torshi contains mushrooms, olive, vinegar, garlic, Persian shallot, curry, black pepper, turmeric, salt and olive oil. You’ll just have to mix all of the ingredients and let them be in vinegar for about a month. Some people add some corns to their torshi, which doesn’t make difference in it’s taste; but makes it more colorful!
Not everybody is a fan of onions; but we suggest you to rely on us and try this one. Onion pickles are small purple onions pickled in vinegar and they have a very strong savory – acidic taste. The best dishes to eat this cuisine with are Dizi and Abgoosht or any kind of food high in fat!
Okay! This one sounds weird too! But trust us and if you found it somewhere, try it. Peach torshi is not that common and you can’t find it as easy as other Iranian torshis. This torshi has a little sweet taste and it’s main ingredients are: Peach, sugar, vinegar, cinnamon, cloves and salt.
To make this torshi, first we have to wash the peaches and cook them with some vinegar for three minutes. After the peaches have cooled, add five cloves to each of them; then put the peaches in a glass, and mix the cinnamon, sugar and salt together and pour over them. Then add vinegar to cover the peach. Place the jar tightly in a cool place. When used, remove the cloves from the peaches and cut them into two pieces. Separate the core. Your torshi will be ready after 30 days!
If you are a fan of spicy food, different peppers are your favorites! Now the good news is that they’ll also are perfect for pickling too! Serving pickled peppers are common in most restaurants; and if you want our opinion they’ll be perfect on the side with Iranian pilaf dishes or some sandwiches like Falafel and Sambosa.
Some fruits are just perfect for pickling! Sour cherry is one of them; to make torshi out of this fruit you just have to put them in vinegar and wait 2-6 month. The more it stays in vinegar without getting eaten it’ll be more sour! Pickled sour cherries are not that much popular and unfortunately you can’t order them anywhere. You might find it in small Iranian restaurants or bazaars, such as Tajrish bazaar.
The most famous Iranian torshi is sir Torshi (pickled garlic). This torshi is best served with the foods that their origin goes back to northern cities of Iran and of course with dishes that include fish in them. We suggest you if you ever had Sabzi Polo, order some Sir torshi on the side!
Shour is one of the most popular Iranian torshis, especially in autumn and winter. The basis of any Shour is salt water, without which the raw materials are incomplete. The raw materials for salting consist of four main components: 1. Vinegar to acidify, 2. Water to reduce the harpness of the acid, 3. Sugar to balance the acid, and 4. Salt to taste.
To make the juice for Shour torshi, simply boil the four main ingredients with any spice you like. Then just pour this liquid into a glass of any Shour torshi you like. As soon as the salt water is at room temperature, put the lid on and put it in the refrigerator. You can use pickles only after 24 hours in the refrigerator. However, the longer the ingredients are in the salt water, the tastier they will be.
When we hear a torshi has eggplant in it’s ingredients we will remember, Liteh, the famous Iranian torshi, which we will introduce to you at the end of the article. But there is an amazing tasting torshi called tamarind and eggplant torshi which is very rare and we strongly recommend you to try it if you found it anywhere!
This torshi contains chopped eggplants sitting in mix of vinegar, water, tamarind, salt, Persian shallot, garlic and different herbs. It taste unique and has a soft texture and we suggest you try it with foods that have meat in them, such as Kebabs or Iranian pilaf dishes that have meat in them.
It’s time to introduce one of the most special kinds of Iranian torshi! The origin of torshi liteh goes back to the southern cities of Iran; and it’s full of tasty herbs and spices. Torshi liteh ingredients are: Eggplant, bell peppers, carrots, green pepper, coriander seed , garlic, mint, curry, salt, turmeric, taragon and vinegar.
To make Torshi liteh, you should first we peel the eggplants; then peel and chop our carrots as small as you can. The next step is to chop the eggplants as well and pour it into a suitable pot with the carrots. Next, clean the green pepper and bell pepper, then chop finely and add to the pot. Now open and chop the garlic cloves, then add to the pot containing other ingredients. If you want the materials to be perfectly homogeneous, you can grind them together. At this stage, place the pot containing the ingredients on a gentle heat and allow the ingredients to drain. Then add salt, curry, coriander seed powder, turmeric, tarragon and mint. After the ingredients are well turned over, add the vinegar to the pot and allow the water to drain into the pot.
Note that during cooking, you have to turn the ingredients upside down every few moments. At this stage, after the water is drawn into the pot, you should remove it from the heat and allow it to adjust to the ambient temperature; then pour the torshi liteh into glass jars with lids and place them in the refrigerator.
In Persian the word “Torsh” is translated as “Sour” in English; and when we say “Torshi“, it refers to something that taste savory.