We kick off our Spring season with an evening at Anderson & Co in Bellenden Road. This will take place on Friday March 1st, and the theme celebrates the Iranian New Year (which this year falls on 20th March at 11.03am – the precise moment of the Spring equinox, since you ask). It is a very sociable time of year – the highlight of the Iranian calendar, in fact. It is also full of ancient and deeply symbolic ritual, no more so than in the case of the traditional food therein.
We will start with bread, cheese and herbs, which is the basis of any Iranian table. This will be followed by ash reshteh: bean and pasta soup, swirled with kashk (liquid whey). Not only does the green-ness of the soup reflect the forthcoming green sprouts of spring, but the strands of pasta themselves are held to represent all the different strands of one’s life coming together. Oh and also – it tastes simply marvellous.
The main course will be reshteh pulao: fragrant rice studded with noodles (symbolising the gathering of friends) and garnished with fried raisins. This is served with a citrusy chicken dish, pickles and yoghurt. For vegetarians there will be a mung bean and spinach hotpot.
Afters will comprise a dessert meze: sweet houmous, pudding tsatsiki, cheese-stuffed dates and more. Because food is getting a little too serious these days, and we don’t do serious.
The lovely Lisa will provide tea or coffee to wash it all down. And (pending the imminent granting of her liquor licence) you can bring your own wine.
The price will be £37.50 per head, and you can book by calling Andersons on 020 7469 7078.
The second event is on Thursday April 4th at No. 67, the delightful cafe/restaurant attached to the South London Gallery. This is a new venue, and so a bit scary for us: we will need you to come along and hold our hands.
This particular event takes you on a voyage around Veggiestan, that fictitious confederation of states which is perhaps more commonly known as the Middle East.
We will start with warm bread, cheese and herbs, which is the basis of any Iranian spread. This will be accompanied by a trio of dips: white bean and olive, red pepper houmous, and yoghurt with spiced aubergine.
Next up comes: hand-rolled vine leaves, our signature pumpkin kibbeh, spinach fatayer and halloumi stacks.
The ‘main’ course will be a mushroom khoresht (stew to you), Yemeni style spiced red lentils, Lebanese artichoke bake and fragrant saffron rice.
Afters will comprise a mixture of Iranian pastries, Moroccan style orange salad and paklava.
There will be tea or coffee to wash it all down, and No. 67 is fully licensed. The price is £35.00 per head, and you can book by calling No 67 direct on 020 7252 7649.
And then on 17th May we are returning to Bambuni for the evening. We’ll fill you in on the details presently, but reserve the date at the very least…