Torshak is a healthy, beneficial snack. It tastes sour and is very popular. It’s to the liking of everyone in the family. Iranians also eat torshak at yalda night parties!
What is torshak?
Torshak is made of sour fruits cooked into a thick sauce. It can contain various fruits and is consumed as a snack. It tastes sour, but it’s different from Persian pickles eaten as side dishes.
What are the different types of torshak?
You can make torshak from different fruits like pomegranates, sour cherries, prunes, barberries, or even dried fruits. Pomegranate torshak is sweet-and-sour while tart cherry torshak is sourer. They absolutely taste out of this world!
Torshak tastes especially good when served with Lavashak. Even looking at this combo will make your mouth water.
How to make torshak?
In this post, I will introduce 4 easy ways of making torshak at home. I will also explain everything about how it’s served.
1. Pomegranate Torshak
This one is pretty simple. You only need to pit the pomegranate and crush the arils. Then put them on the stove until you get a thick sauce.
Torshak should be sour, so sour pomegranates are more suitable for this recipe. Do not use sweet pomegranates.
You need these ingredients:
- Pomegranate (sour)
- Pomegranate paste
- Rock candy or sugar (optional)
Step 1- Crush the pomegranate arils
Pit the pomegranates first. Smash the arils with a masher or a hand mixer until their juice seeps out. Be careful that not all the flesh needs to detach from the seeds. Just mash them until the mixture becomes a little watery.
Step 2- Cook the arils
Pour the crushed arils into a pot with some water. Put the pot on the stove. If the pomegranates are too sour, add some rock candy to reduce the sourness.
Taste the torshak midway. Add some salt. Add the pomegranate paste in this step as well. Taste the torshak again. If it’s too sour, add some more sugar or rock candy.
Stir the ingredients and make sure they don’t burn.
Let the rock candies melt in the mild heat, and the sauce thicken. Once it reaches the desired thickness, where the arils stick together, turn the heat off.
It takes 30-40 minutes for the torshak to be prepared. The exact time depends on the amount of heat and the type of pot you use.
Finally, serve the prepared torshak with lavashak. I rolled the lavashaks and put them in the torshak.
- If you don’t have pomegranate paste at home, you can make homemade pomegranate molasses. It’s made without sugar, and it tastes amazing.
- If you don’t like feeling pomegranate seeds under your teeth, you can make seedless pomegranate torshak. To do so, you need to thoroughly mash the arils and then take the seeds out. After that, heat the juice until it thickens.
- Separate the white mesocarp. It will ruin the flavor of your torshak.
- 3-4 Pomegranate (sour)
- 1 tbsp Pomegranate paste
- 1 tsp Salt
- a little Rock candy or sugar optional
- Pit the pomegranates first. Smash the arils with a masher or a hand mixer until their juice seeps out.
- Pour the crushed arils into a pot with some water. Put the pot on the stove. If the pomegranates are too sour, add some rock candy to reduce the sourness.
- Taste the torshak midway. Add some salt. Add the pomegranate paste in this step as well.It takes 30-40 minutes for the torshak to be prepared. Once it reaches the desired thickness, where the arils stick together, turn the heat off.
2. Tart cherry Torshak
Tart cherry torshak is made of sour cherries. You need to heat the cherries on the stove until you get a thick sauce.
Step 1- Prepare the tart cherries
First, wash the sour cherries and separate the stem and leaves. You don’t need to put them.
Step 2- Cook the tart cherries
Pour the cherries into a pot with some water and turn the stove on. Add the rock candy and let everything cook for one hour. If foam appears on the cherries, gather it with a spoon and throw it away. Add the salt too.
Depending on your taste, you can control the sourness of torshak by adding or omitting rock candy and salt. Once the liquid thickens, your tart cherry torshak is ready.
- If you want a torshak without pits, pit the cherries first. However, I prefer eating torshak with the pits.
- Use a medium-sized pot for making sour cherry torshak. It shouldn’t be small, since the ingredients will boil too much and the torshak turns dark. If the pot is too big, the water vaporizes too quickly and the cherries remain raw.
Tart cherry Torshak
- 1 kg Sour cherry
- 1 tbsp Salt
- 2 cups Water
- One piece Rock candy Optional
- Wash the sour cherries and separate the stem and leaves.
- Pour the cherries into a pot with some water and turn the stove on. Add the rock candy and let everything cook for one hour.
- Add the salt. Once the liquid thickens, your tart cherry torshak is ready.
3. Dried cherry torshak
If you don’t have fresh sour cherries, don’t worry. You can make tart cherry torshak with dried cherries too!
Step 1- soak the dried cherries
Slightly wash the dried cherries. Soak them with 2 cups of water for 2 hours.
Step 2- Cook the dried cherries
Put the cherries on the stove until the liquid becomes thick. Taste them and add some pomegranate paste, salt and if you want, some plum paste.
Once the result is absolutely thick, your dried cherry torshak with pomegranate paste is ready.
Dried cherry torshak
- 0.5 kg Dried cherry
- 1 tbsp Pomegranate paste
- 1 tbsp Salt
- 2 tsbp Cherry plum paste optional
- 2 cups Water
- Soak the dried cherries with 2 cups of water for 2 hours.
- Put the cherries on the stove until the liquid becomes thick. Taste them and add some pomegranate paste, salt and if you want, some plum paste.
4. Mixed torshak with dried fruits
One more recipe for making torshak uses dried fruits. This is a simple method of making torshak since dried fruits are available in stores during any season.
Step 1- Soak the dried fruits
Wash the dried fruits and soak them for half an hour until they soften, and any dirt still attached to them dissolves.
Step 2- Cook the dried fruits
Transfer the fruits to another container and pour 3 cups of water on them. Put them on medium heat and let the mixture thicken. Taste it, and depending on your preference, add salt and pomegranate paste.
If needed, close the lid to quicken the cooking process. However, by the end of the cooking, you need to remove the lid so the water vaporizes faster and the liquid thickens. It takes around 50-60 minutes to prepare mixed dried fruit torshak.
Mixed torshak with dried fruits
- 1 tbsp Salt
- 2 tbsp Pomegranate or cherry plum paste
- 3 cups Water
Dried fruits include:
- 1 cup Cherry plum
- 1 cup Cranberry
- 1 cup Sour cherry
- A little Prune
- Wash the dried fruits and soak them for half an hour.
- Pour 3 cups of water on the fruits. Put them on medium heat and let the mixture thicken.
- Taste it, and depending on your preference, add salt and pomegranate paste. It takes around 50-60 minutes to prepare mixed dried fruit torshak.
Why do we add rock candy to torshak?
I added some rock candy to the pomegranate torshak and sour cherry torshak.
The first reason is to reduce the excessive sourness. The second reason is since these fruits have a cold nature, rock candy balances that and prevents stomachache from eating torshak.
As you know, eating cold-natured foods can cause stomachache and headaches for some people.
How is torshak served?
You can serve torshak in several ways:
- Serve it as it is, by itself!
- If you’ve made pomegranate or sour cherry torshak, add some dried fruit to it. Like dried apricot, dried cherry, prune, and dried plum. You can add the dried fruits to torshak while it’s still hot and right off of the stove. The dried fruits will soften a little too.
Then, you can let them soak overnight, fully absorbing the torshak juice, and becoming soft. The final result is mouthwatering.
- you can serve torshak with Lavashak. It enhances the flavor of Lavashak, making the sourness even lovelier.
Torshak isn’t usually used in foods, but you can use Ghare Ghoroot in foods like Ghormeh Sabzi or Ash Reshteh. Ghareh or black Kashk is another sour treat made from cooked kashk water.
Side effects of torshak:
Don’t go overboard with eating torshak or any other sour treats. Too many sour snacks can make your blood pressure drop, along with the possibility of stomachache due to increased acidity of the stomach.
- If you don’t have any rock candy, you can use sugar instead.
- You can use plum paste or cherry plum paste instead of pomegranate paste.
- You can add a little salt to the torshak while cooking, and add the rest while serving.
- While the torshak is boiling, remove the white foam that forms on the surface and throw it away. This way, your torshak will have a clear and beautiful look.
Torshak is a delicious, popular snack in Iran, even found on the streets and stalls alongside Lavashak and Ghareh.
If the leftover pomegranates in your fridge are too sour and no one feels like eating them, making pomegranate torshak is a good way of getting rid of them! Making torshak is pretty easy, and I have posted 4 simple torshak recipes here.
Homemade recipes for this delicious fruit sauce that have been posted here are completely organic and healthy. If you’ve tried these recipes, I’d be glad to read your thoughts in the comments!