In a nutshell: A popular spice in Iranian cooking where it's known as golpar and widely used to add a lovely floral aroma to soups, lentil and bean dishes.
Angelica is something of a misnomer, since Angelica seeds are actually the dried seeds of hogweed (heracleum persicum), a fruit-bearing bush similiar to angelica, that grows wild in the mountains of Iran and neighbouring countries. Also known as Persian hogweed, holy ghost or angelique. Widespread in Scandinavia where its become more of an invasive weed.
Angelica seeds are slightly bitter and have a strong and intriguing floral aroma. In Iranian cooking, they are used to flavour all kinds of dishes and marinades, from pickled vegetables to soups, stews, and lentils. It’s also valued as an herb that helps the digestion of beans and pulses. In Iran, Angelica seeds are also ground and used to finish dishes with fava beans, as well as with potato or fresh pomegranate seed salads. One of the most popular uses of this particularly Persian spice known as golpar is to sprinkle the ground seeds over baghali pokhteh (cooked fava beans). The stems of the plant are also used in pickling.
How to use
- Sprinkle over a salad of broad beans dressed with olive oil and pomegranate molasses.
- Use some stems and seeds in your next batch of cucumber pickles.
- Add to any vegetable soup of chicken stew.
- Use when baking your next batch of sourdough, sprinkling some ground seeds into your dough mix.
About Épices de Cru
Épices de Cru began in 1982 as a catering partnership between Philippe and Ethné de Vienne. Their mission was a kind of “cooking pot anthropology:” learning the secrets of family cooking around the world and applying these techniques to the needs of hungry Montrealers. The secret, they learned, was spices. Over the last two decades, Philippe and Ethné have searched for the world’s best spices, accompanied by their children, Marika and Arik. The de Viennes believe in direct sourcing spices: visiting growing regions, spending time with growers, and developing personal relationships that last decades. In 2004, they officially opened their first spice shop in Montreal’s fantastic Jean Talon market– it’s since become a mecca for foodies from all over the world. I first visited in 2008 and have been buying and using their spices on a regular basis ever since that first exciting visit. They steadfastly maintain that they do nothing original, only facilitating the exchange of culinary common sense from one place to another. But, what they do is simply quite brilliant - by providing us with the finest quality ingredients, and their superb spice mixes, we can all experiment with unusual spices and recreate delicious recipes from around the world.