Khoresht Gheimeh (Khoresh Gheymeh) is a comforting Persian stew cooked with beef and yellow split peas. This stew is super fragrant with melt-in-your-mouth beef cooked to perfection with earthy spices like cinnamon and turmeric. Like most Iranian stews, this stew is served with fluffy saffron rice.
About This Recipe
Gheimeh or Gheymeh is an Iranian stew (Khoresht) cooked with small pieces of beef or lamb, yellow split peas, tomato paste, and dried lime. A bowl of this stew is served with crispy deep-fried potato strips and fluffy Persian rice. Thanks to all the earthy spices like saffron, cinnamon, and turmeric this stew is super flavorful. Of course, Gheymeh stew is cooked in most parts of Iran and each region has its own recipe and ingredients for cooking this stew. The variations are endless! Gheimeh Bademjan, Gheimeh Morgh, Gheimeh Rashti, and Gheimeh Bamieh are just a few other types of this stew.
Khoresh Gheymeh Ingredients
- Beef or lamb: Typically, the Gheymeh stew is made with beef or lamb, though some variations use other meats. You should cut the beef into small chunks for this recipe.
- Yellow split peas: You can typically find yellow split peas at Middle Eastern or Persian grocery stores. To cook a perfect gheimeh, you have to soak the split peas in cold water for 2-4 hours and change the water a few times. Soaking the yellow split peas can help to decrease the cooking time.
- Onion: In Iranian cuisine, lamb or beef must be sautéed with diced onions and oil before cooking.
- Dried limes: Limoo Amani or dried limes are the main flavorings of this stew. The dried limes give a pleasantly sour/bitter taste to the Khoresht Gheimeh. Of course, dried limes should be added to the stew at the last hour of cooking so that the stew does not taste bitter.
- Tomato paste: Tomato paste gives a nice flavor and red color to the stew.
- Spices: Spices are the soul of Persian cooking. With the right choices of spices, you can transform a common stew into a flavor-packed one. Each Iranian stew has its own spice mix, the spice mix of the Khoresht Gheymeh is a combination of black or red pepper powder, turmeric, and cinnamon. Adding a little bloomed saffron will level up the flavor and aroma of this stew.
- Potato: Use Russet or Yukon gold potatoes for having crispy deep-fried potato strips.
How to Make Khoresht Gheymeh
- Soak the yellow split peas in cold water for about 2 hours and change the water a few times.
- Cut the beef into small chunks.
- Chop the onion finely. Add a little oil to the pot and then add chopped onion.
- Sauté onion until golden and soft over medium heat. Add turmeric, pepper, and tomato paste.
- Sauté tomato paste and onion for 4-5 minutes over medium-high heat.
- Add beef to the pot and brown on all sides.
- Drain yellow split peas and add them in.
- Add 3 cups of boiling water, cover the pot, and bring it to a boil, then turn down the heat, and let the stew simmer gently for about 1.5 hours. Check occasionally and add more water if needed.
- Pierce the dried lemons carefully with a fork. Soak them in hot water for 30 minutes to get all the bitterness out.
- Add dried limes and let the stew simmer for another hour.
- Add salt, bloomed saffron, and cinnamon to the stew and let it thicken just enough.
- Peel and cut potatoes into thin strips.
- Rinse potato strips in a colander under cold running water and pat dry potatoes with a clean kitchen towel.
- Heat oil in a saucepan. Deep fry the potatoes until golden brown and crispy.
- Ladle stew into a bowl. Top with crispy french fries and serve with a plate of fluffy Persian saffron rice.
Vegetarian Khoresht Gheymeh: To have a vegan version of this dish simply omit meat from the classic recipe and top it with extra french fries! that’s it! This stew is super delicious. Also, you can use mushrooms instead of meat because they have a meaty texture. So we have a great substitute for meat in vegan dishes!
Khoresh Gheymeh Ba Morgh: Fry chicken pieces in hot oil until the skin is crispy and golden. Follow the rest of the steps according to the classic Gheimeh recipe. Just add the fried chicken pieces instead of beef.
- Onion is a great way to add flavor to the stew. Be sure to saute the onion until golden before adding the tomato paste and meat.
- Don’t forget to add a few tablespoons of bloomed saffron to the stew.
- Bloomed saffron and cinnamon should be added to the stew in the last hour of cooking.
- Some people add a little rose water in the last hour of cooking to make the stew more fragrant.
- To have vibrant yellow-colored fried potato strips, add some turmeric to them when they are frying.
- If the peel of the dried limes is bitter, you can soak them in hot water for 30 minutes before adding them to the stew. Drain before adding to the stew.
How to Serve Khoresht Gheimeh?
This stew is mostly served with Persian rice. You can serve it in a big bowl or in individual small bowls for each person. Use french fries as toppings. Yes! It’s shockingly delicious!
Don’t forget about the side dishes! Perfectly cooked fluffy white rice is a staple side dish for many Persian meals like Khoresht Gheimeh. Perfect news for all rice lovers! Of course, I suggest trying saffron rice instead of plain white rice. The saffron adds a golden color and floral aroma to the rice.
Other common side dishes to have with your stew are salad Shirazi, yogurt, pickles, or a plate full of fresh herbs(Sabzi Khordan).
How Long Do Leftovers Last?
Leftover Khoresht Gheimeh Sibzamini will keep well in the fridge for 2-3 days and can be reheated on the stovetop. The stew will likely be very thick so before reheating add an extra splash of water to loosen the texture before cooking.
Did you like the Khoresht Gheimeh recipe? Leave your comment below and If you make this recipe, be sure to tag your photos #yummynotes
Looking for More Persian Recipes?
- Ghormeh Sabzi Recipe
- Khoresht Karafs Recipe
- Tahchin Recipe
- Mirza Ghasemi
- Reshteh Polo Recipe
- Kookoo Sabzi Recipe
- 300 gr beef or lamb, cut into small cubes
- 1 cup yellow split peas, rinsed and drained
- 1 large onion, diced
- 2 tablespoon tomato paste
- 3 dried lime (Limoo Amani in Persian) pierced with a fork
- 2 teaspoons salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ¼ cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- 2 tablespoons bloomed saffron
- 3-4 cups water
- 2 large potatoes peeled and cut into thin sticks
- ½ cup oil for frying the potatoes + more for cooking
Soak the yellow split peas in cold water for about 2 hours and change the water a few times.
Cut the beef into small chunks. Chop the onion finely. Add a little oil to the pot and then add chopped onion.
Sauté onion until golden and soft over medium heat. Add turmeric, pepper, and tomato paste. Sauté tomato paste and onion for 4-5 minutes over medium-high heat.
Add beef to the pot and brown on all sides. Drain yellow split peas and add them in.
Add 3 cups of boiling water, cover the pot, and bring it to a boil, then turn down the heat, and let the stew simmer gently for about 1.5 hours. Check occasionally and add more water if needed.
Pierce the dried lemons carefully with a fork. Soak them in hot water for 30 minutes to get all the bitterness out. Add dried limes and let the stew simmer for another hour.
Add salt, bloomed saffron, and cinnamon to the stew and let it thicken just enough.
Peel and cut potatoes into thin strips. Rinse potato strips in a colander under cold running water and pat dry potatoes with a clean kitchen towel. Heat oil in a saucepan. Deep fry the potatoes until golden brown and crispy.
Ladle stew into a bowl. Top with crispy french fries and serve with a plate of fluffy Persian saffron rice.