Flatbread, Feta and Sabzi – A Persian Breakfast
There really isn’t any method to this meal of flatbread and sabzi (herbs). It’s a case of opening packets, slicing the herbs and salad ingredients, and serving on a plate. This quintessential Persian breakfast is what we ate almost everyday on a recent trip to Iran. Subtle variations exist depending where you are in the country, but mostly where the bread is concerned.
Some of the best bread we had on our trip was in the small village of Dasht-e-khak in Kerman province while staying with local tour guide, Hamid and his family. The bread was a type of barbari (a thicker style bread brought to Iran by the Hazara people) cooked in the village oven and bought daily by Hamid’s wife, Fatimeh. It was heavy and dark like an Irish soda bead and coated in Nigella seeds – perfect for keeping us full on a day packed with mountain adventures and excursions in and around Zarand county.
In the cities, however, we found sangak bread served more frequently. Cooked over hot stones, it is an unleavened bread easy to come by in the many back street bakeries of bigger Iranian cities. In Shiraz, we stumbled upon one such place which had locals queuing at the counter, waiting for lengths of sangak to be pulled out of the oven and rested on a huge bed-like wire rack outside the shop. We stopped and bought some (it cost 30c) and were welcomed by the locals who insisted, as foreigners, we were served first.
Fresh from the oven, it was crispy on the outside and just soft beneath the surface – that evening we enjoyed it with a minced lamb stew bought from a street vendor at a late night market near our hotel.
A Shirazi baker removes the pebbles from the flatbread after it has come out of the oven.
Prep time: 5 minutes
1 Lebanese cucumber
2 spring onions
Handful of mixed green herbs (sabzi)
Toum – garlic sauce (optional)
After you’ve eaten the savouries enjoy leftover flatbread with cold butter and sweet carrot or sour cherry jam.
Any salad vegetables would go well – radish, tomato would be welcome additions.
Warm the flatbread before serving.
Enjoy with strong sweet black tea.
Anyone in Melbourne wanting to try sangak can buy it at