Addenda to Shuk Levinsky שוק לוינסקי
I ended the last post with a mention of "zoresh". In English these are called barberries ברביריס. Everytime I go to Shuk California שוק קליפורניה, I ask for them. I seem to get the same merchant each time. I believe he is a member of the owning family. And each time I ask for them, he asks me if I know what they are. Maybe I am mistaken and think they are currents or raisins.
Each time I tell him I know how to use them in rice dishes with ful (פול) and dill. He is always surprised and tells me I don't look Persian. I say, I am not Persian. Then there is a lull. He is pleased that I know what they are and that I know how to cook with them but clearly he has not met many people who eat Persian rice who are not Parsi.
If you want a taste of this excellent dish without having to buy the berries, down the street from Shuk California is a store front with no name. In the window there is an old woman who tends the table. You can go in and buy a plate of food or buy containers to take home. This is called a Shuk HaOchel שוק האוכל - a place to buy food that is homemade with no labels or marketing or production values. In the picture you can see three kinds of rice. Taste them all. Amazing how the same ingredients can be combined and result in entirely different dishes.