Persian new year (Norouz) is fast approaching. One of the biggest Norouz traditions is baking delicious sweets. The cardamom, rose water, and nutty aromas that are filling my kitchen right now is basically my idea of heaven. Over the next few weeks I will be in a baking frenzy and will essentially be running what will look like an Iranian bakery, right out of my kitchen. First up on the menu: nan-e nokhodchi aka. Persian chickpea cookies with pistachio.
Persian, middle eastern, and Indian baking utilizes many ingredients that are not commonly used in Western baking. For example chickpea (or garbanzo in spanish) flour is the main ingredient in cookies the pictured here. Unlike wheat based pastries, sweets made from chickpea flour are free from gluten or similar allergens. Since milk, egg or other animal product are not used in these cookies they can also be used in any vegan diet. Chickpeas are also great source of fiber, protein, and other minerals.