Mahshid and her Persian Recipes


Meet Mahshid

"We are living in a world of violence, we are living in a world of danger. And I think food is only way left to bring reconciliation among people."

Mahshid is a powerhouse of Persian cooking. If you’re lucky enough to be invited to a Persian house for dinner, she highly recommends you don’t eat for a few days prior.

Mahshid is Iranian (from Persia) and came to Australia by boat in 2013. Like so many others in her situation, Mahshid has been living in limbo for years, uncertain when or if she will ever receive permanent protection and call Australia her home.

"Before I come to Australia my job was interpreter, translator. When I came to Australia I said, 'What can I do to support my life financially?' I could start cooking and teach other people cooking. This journey, it help me to think about others as well."

Over the last 9 years, Mahshid has made a name for herself as a visionary cooking instructor, sharing her cuisine and teaching many others to cook her recipes. This was a wonderful way for Mahshid to introduce her culture and food to others, and also to share her experience of seeking asylum and the stories of other refugees.

"Asylum seekers who come here, they are not here to take your job, to take your place and they are not going to be any harm or burden to you. We are not here to compete, we are here to complete."

Although she is living out her culinary dreams and hopes to publish her own cookbook, Mahshid has a bigger dream of being reunited with her son whom she hasn’t seen for 11 years. Her ultimate goal is to obtain her permanent residency and citizenship so that one day her son can be by her side in safety, in Australia. To this day, Mahshid continues to be an advocate for her Iranian community and people seeking asylum.

Watch Mahshid on Studio10

Mahshid’s Recipes

Register to host your Feast to access all of Mahshid's recipesYou will receive the full recipe booklet in your Host Kit and will also get a link to the recipes in your registration confirmation email.

Saffron Tea
  • Complexity
  •  (Easy)


    • Vegan friendly


    • 2 tsp loose black tea or 4 black tea bags
    • 10-12 threads of saffron (substitute: 2 tsp saffron powder)*
    • 4 cups water
Register your Feast and be emailed these delicious recipes
Parvardeh - Olive Dip
  • Complexity
  •  (Easy)


    • Vegan friendly. Gluten free. Contains nuts


    • 300g pitted green olives
    • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
    • 1 Tbsp. pomegranate molasses
    • A pinch of golpar* (optional)
    • 1/4 tsp. dried mint
    • 3 fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
    • Sea salt, to taste
    • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
    • 1 Tbsp. fresh pomegranate seeds
    • 1 Tbsp. walnuts, roughly chopped
Register your Feast and be emailed these delicious recipes
Gheymeh Bademjan
  • Complexity
  •  (Medium)


    • Contains meat. Gluten free


    • 3 large eggplants, peeled, sliced in 3 lengthwise
    • 2 tomatoes, halved
    • 1 egg white, lightly beaten
    • 150ml vegetable oil (or olive oil)
    • 100g yellow split peas, rinsed
    • 500g lamb meat, diced into 2.5cm cubes (we suggest lamb rump)
    • 2 large onions, finely diced
    • 2 Tbsp. tomato paste
    • 1 1/2 tsp. turmeric
    • 1/3 tsp. ground black pepper
    • 1 tsp. salt
    • 2 tsp. ground saffron
    • 1/3 cup lemon juice
    • 2 Tbsp. tamarind paste
    • 1 tsp. cinnamon
    • 2 Tbsp. rose water
Register your Feast and be emailed these delicious recipes
Persian Jewelled Rice
  • Complexity
  •  (Complex)


    • Vegetarian. Optional nuts


    • 4 cups of long grain basmati rice
    • 2 Tbsp. butter
    • 2 Tbsp. salt
    • 1/8 tsp. saffron + 2 Tbsp. hot water
    • Optional garnish:
    • 1/2 cup of dried barberries (substitute: cranberries, apricots)
    • 1/2 cup of raisins
    • 1/2 cup of slithered almonds
    • 1/2 cup slithered or crushed pistachios
Register your Feast and be emailed these delicious recipes
Sholeh Zard
  • Complexity
  •  (Medium)


    • Vegetarian. Contains nuts


    • 1/2 cup rice
    • 5 cups water
    • 275g sugar
    • 1 tsp. saffron
    • 1 tsp. ground cardamom
    • 1 cup rose water
    • 100g sliced almonds
    • 50g butter
    • Ground cinnamon (garnish to taste)
    • 100g unsalted pistachios

About Mahshid’s Recipes

Mahshid started cooking at a young age and you can tell just by looking at the beautiful complexity of each dish. Everything is done with care, whilst being packed full of flavour and spices. Mahshid describes her cooking as colourful and with sour taste notes rather than spicy - a characteristic in Persian cooking.

It’s hard to overlook the luminous Persian Rice, which is the perfect accompaniment to the Gheymeh Bademjan, a rich and delicious lamb and eggplant stew. Just to add more morsels of flavour, Mahshid shares her Parvardeh recipe, an olive, pomegranate and walnut side dish. Saffron Tea is served before and during the feast, which is bookended by Shoeleh Zard, an aromatic and sweet rice pudding.