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Persian cuisine comprises the cooking traditions of Iran. Iran's culinary culture has historically interacted with the cuisines of the neighbouring regions, including Caucasian cuisine, Turkish cuisine, Levantine cuisine, Greek cuisine, Central Asian cuisine, and Russian cuisine. Iran sits at the centre of the former Kingdom of Persia, a civilization dating back over 2500 years. Because of the country's unique history and geography, it translates to a diverse mix of cultural influences on the cuisine. Although Iran is part of the Middle East, it has close ties to Europe, the Far East and Africa, owing to its central place on the Silk Road trade route.
Many coveted ingredients are native to Iran, including pistachios, almonds, walnuts, saffron, mint, oranges, pomegranates and grapes. Iran has a variable climate with four distinct seasons, and unlike other parts of the Middle East, where the dry terrain limited what food could be grown, the ancient Persians transformed vast stretches of arid land into fertile oases via underground aquifers that drew melted snow water into the desert. A bright, sensuous, fruit-and-herb filled cuisine was born.
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