lemon saffron roasted pistachios

lemon saffron roasted pistachios

Quick and easy lemon saffron roasted pistachios. The perfect snack to serve company with a frosty glass of beer or sparkling water.

Salty, lemony, and fragrant…pistachios so good, they’ll make you want to belly dance!

If you’ve ever been invited to an Iranian home for dinner, you know that we are big on hospitality. Any guest that walks into a Persian home is inevitably greeted with a Soffreh (table setting) replete with sliced melon, assorted fruit, and the quintessential bowl of Ajeel (mixed nuts). All this is followed by a substantial dinner, complete with dessert and tea at the end.

With all the delicious food to choose from, the Ajeel never grabbed my attention. It wasn’t until a family trip to Darioush Winery in Napa that I really took notice of the delicate flavors in the Ajeel.

While most vintners will serve their wine with cheese or chocolate, I was intrigued by the fact that Darioush winery (the owner is a fellow Iranian) sampled their fantastic Shiraz with pistachios. Not just any pistachios, but traditional Persian pistachios that were roasted with lemon juice and saffron, with pretty crystals of sea salt adorning the shell.

Reminiscing about those fabulous little nuts and craving variety in my “go-to healthy snack” options, I played around with some recipe ideas and this is what I came up with (!) :



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    lemon saffron roasted pistachios

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    • Author: Sep Campos


    • 3 cups raw pistachios (in the shell)
    • the juice of 3 lemons
    • 3 tsp sea salt
    •  1 pinch saffron (this stuff’s expensive, if you can’t get your hands on saffron most international markets carry Safflower…look for the Sadaf brand)


    1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grind the saffron with a mortar and pestle until you get a fine powder.

    2. Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl (reserve 1 tsp of the salt) and mix with a large spoon until all the pistachios are coated.

    3. Spread the pistachios on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Roast in the oven for 20-30minutes, removing the pistachios from the oven halfway to add the remaining tsp of salt and move the nuts around with a spoon.

    4. Keep the nuts on the baking sheet until they cool



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  1. All are wonderous! I’ve been to most parts of Iran. I’ve tasted
    & enjoyed with a multitude of Iranians, Turks, Azerbaijani, &
    other cultures.. Such sensational tastes &cooking styles!!
    Everything is a learning experience wherever one wonders…
    From the colorful bazaars to the many homes, restaurants, to the outdoor ( in, too) fish cafes, it seems like a fantasy dream!
    Even the abgooseh, handmade cookies & candies, to a myriad
    of other delectable foods, it’s memorable times.

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