Advieh is a sweetly fragrant, cozy blend of spices with Persian roots. It is also called Persian spice mix, Persian spice, or adwiya.
What is Advieh
Advieh is a salt-free, aromatic spice blend that can be found all throughout the Middle East and from one end of the Mediterranean to another. Its name translates as “spice”, and it is an infinitely adaptable recipe. There are rumored to be as many Advieh recipes as there are home cooks mixing their preferred blend in their kitchens, though our Advieh is more of a “southern style” blend since it features rose petals in the mix.
The Story Behind Advieh
Persia, or modern-day Iran, has been at the center of human civilization for as long as there have been complex civilizations. Originally part of Mesopotamia, people have settled in that area for more than 14,000 years. Iran’s southern region, near the Persian Gulf, is what was originally called “Persia”; the northern region was known as Media, and Media exercised control over Persia despite its nominal independence. In 559 BC, Cyrus II rose to the throne of Persia and rebelled against Medean rule, first waging—and winning—a war over Media and uniting Persia from north to south. Eventually, Cyrus II, now Cyrus the Great, would expand his empire to touch what is now Uzbekistan and Afghanistan to the east, and the Turkish coast to the west1.
This territorial expansion begat improved infrastructure, like roads, which encouraged an increase in trade. Persia saw an even greater influx of spices from traders that traveled the improved roads across their vast empire, adopting Cinnamon from China and Cumin Seed from India into their culinary canon. At some point, Advieh emerged in Persian homes, though its emergence was not noted in a formal history book. It’s something that’s become so thoroughly ingrained into the culture that it’s hard to understand a time before its existence. Advieh has been called the “fairy dust of Eastern cooking2,” an almost indefinable seasoning that adapts itself to both regional influences and personal style. According to Margaret Shaida, spices used in Advieh in southern Iran, near the Persian Gulf, are reminiscent of aromatic but mildly spicy Garam Masala, since that shows the influence of trade relationships between the Gulf ports and Indian vendors3.
Advieh is generally earthy and aromatic, and is never spicy-hot from chile peppers. It’s got a heavier flavor profile in norther Iran, while the southern part of that country tends toward a more delicate mix. Rose Petals, cultivated in Persia and exported into commercial culinary trade more than 2,000 years ago4, are an addition that comes from the warmer south. The focus in the south was on more delicate seasonings that would accentuate lighter foods; this is the approach we took as we developed our Advieh blend.
What Does Advieh Taste Like
At first taste, Advieh is robust and woodsy, with cinnamon at the forefront. Earthy cumin, with its mild hint of smoke, creates a base of flavor upon which the sweet, citrusy mint of cardamom sits. Bright, lemony coriander billows across the top and floats along with delicate astringency of rose petals. It finishes with the cozy, nutty warmth of nutmeg.
How Do I Use Advieh
Advieh is often used in Persian rice dishes, so stir into rice and make tahchin, a baked rice dish with fragrant rice blanketing a layer of rich lamb or beans, and add to milk and simmer for a sweet and savory shir berenj, or rice pudding, for dessert. Mix with eggs and flour to make kuku kadoo, a Persian zucchini frittata. Add some to Roasted Eggplant Dip for rich flavor. Swap out Herbs de Provence for Advieh in these Grilled Lamb Kabobs for a real Middle Eastern treat. Try it on Buttermilk Marinated Grilled Chicken, sprinkle over butternut squash and bake until tender, or enjoy the flavor of Advieh bloomed in some butter and tossed with mixed nuts at your next party. And we love it in Dolmeh, rolled grape leaves stuffed with a savory vegetarian filling.
What Can I Substitute for Advieh
Advieh has a hard-to-match flavor profile, but you could try using Ras el Hanout as a substitute. Look for spice blends that do not have a spicy hot profile. You could also consider using mild Garam Masala or Sweet Curry Powder.
|Ingredients||Cinnamon, coriander, cumin, cardamom, nutmeg, rose petals|
|Also Called||Persian spice mix, Persian spice, or adwiya|
|Recommended Uses||Use in rice dishes, kebabs, chicken, vegetables|
|Flavor Profile||Robust and earthy, with sweet and citrusy top notes and a smoky, nutty base|
|How To Store||Airtight container in a cool, dark place|
|Shelf Life||6-12 months|
|Country of Origin||USA|
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Serving Size1 tsp
Amount Per Serving
% Daily Value*