1 cup walnuts
1 cup fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
2/3 cup fresh cilantro leaves, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup pomegranate molasses
2 cups green olives, pitted (see Cook's Note) Pomegranate seeds, for garnish, optional
1 Pulse the walnuts in a food processor until finely ground (see Cook's Note).
Transfer to a medium bowl, add the mint, cilantro and garlic and stir to combine. Stir in the olive oil, pomegranate molasses and 1/4 teaspoon salt and mix to make a paste. Add the olives and give the mixture a good stir.
2 Transfer to a container with a lid and refrigerate for at least 4 hours and up
to 48 hours. (The longer the olives marinate, the better the flavor.) Taste and add more salt, if desired. Transfer to a serving bowl, top with pomegranate seeds if using and serve.
This classic Persian marinated olive dish, served alongside main courses and as an appetizer or snack, is loaded with crunchy walnuts and pomegranate seeds, minced garlic and fresh herbs. But the real game changer is pomegranate molasses. This tangy, tart condiment--which is also great in salad dressings, marinades, drinks, and many other preparations-rounds out and elevates all the other ingredients. Zeytoon Parvardeh is traditionally made with local herbs, such as choochagh, which grows wild in the fields of Gilan province in northern Iran. Mint and cilantro make a good substitute.