Tuesday, March 14, 2006

the eve before the last wednesday of the new year

It is nice to be able to celebrate more than one new year. In this case, we're getting ready bit by bit chez nm for the Iranian New Year. Granted I don't do the big huge celebration that you would see in the Southland, but in my own little martha-ey way, I get things together. Alas, like last year we'll be in Rome, we know when New Years will be and we'll do our portable haft sin as usual.

Today is the the celebration of last wednesday before the new year also known as Chahar Shanbeh Soori, the traditions are based on Zoorastrian Fire Festival. People light fires and you are to jump over them getting rid of the illness and bad juju and bring happiness to the new year. We do it in the small scale, a candle on the porch. In the past we would pass the candle under Jacques and Roya and jump over it ourselves.

The other tradition is to eat a noodle soup - ashe reshteh and to have a special fruit and nut mix (ajil) that one's mother is kind enough to provide.

The chahar shanbeh souri ajil

In equal proportions mix

Shelled pistachios
Roasted chick peas (found in Iranian grocery stores)
Almonds (fresh and non toasted is great)
hazelnuts ( I like mine roasted)
Dried figs (these little ones are very dry and yummy)
Dried apricots (my mom skips this step)
Raisins (we use two kinds - flame and sultanas)

Mix together and enjoy during the next three or four weeks, if it lasts that long.

Nushe jan!
Eat up, buttercups. My friends will attest to the yumminess of the mixture. TH leaves behind the chickpeas (my mom often makes a chickpea free version for her) and B. eats TH's chickpeas. Its a win/win situation.

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