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Posted on 2011-04-28

Zoolbia is a traditional crunchy and sweet Iranian pastry. Zoolbia is a deep fried pastry made with flour, corn starch, yogurt, saffron, rosewater, and syrup. It would be perfect with a cup of Persian black tea.

Yield: Serves 6


    For batter:

  • 250 g (about 2 cups) corn starch
  • 35 g (about 1/4 cup) wheat flour
  • 250 g (about 1 cup) plain yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons rosewater (you can find it at any Iranian store)
  • canola oil (or any liquid cooking oil)
  • 1/5 teaspoon ground saffron
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/5 teaspoon baking soda
  • For syrup:

  • 400 g (about 2 cups) sugar
  • 1 1/3 cups water
  • 1/4 cup rosewater (you can find it at any Iranian store)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/5 teaspoon ground cardamom

Dissolve ground saffron in 1 tablespoon of boiling water and set aside (click for How to Use Saffron).

To make the batter; place the yogurt and corn starch in a mixing bowl. Let sit for 5 minutes. Then mix well. Add the wheat flour, 2 tablespoons rosewater, butter, baking soda and dissolved saffron. Beat with a mixer until the batter is smooth (I used electric mixer). Let it stand for 30 minutes.


Meanwhile make the syrup. To make the syrup; combine water, 1/4 cup rosewater and sugar in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Continue heating until sugar is completely dissolved and the syrup thickens, stirring occasionally (avoid too much stirring). Add lemon juice and ground cardamom; mix well. Remove from heat.

Transfer the batter to a medium-size zip lock bag, remove the excess air and seal the top. With a scissors, snip off a corner to make a 1/4-inch-wide hole (you can use a funnel instead of zip lock).


In a deep medium skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Then reduce the heat to medium. Carefully squeeze out batter from the zip lock bag into hot oil. Gradually swirl the batter outward in a circular motion, make about 4 inches round. Be careful, the oil may splash! Fry until golden brown on both sides, turning once. Add more oil if necessary.


Using tongs or two forks, carefully remove zoolbia from skillet and shake off excess oil. Drop gently into syrup. Let it stand in syrup for 4-5 minutes. Place them in a colander (do not place the zoolbias on top of each other while draining, just a single layer).


Then transfer the zoolbia to a serving dish and cool in a single layer. Repeat with remaining batter.

Note: Please do not use our photos without prior written permission. Thanks!

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Posted by Mariam on 2013-02-08
How far ahead of time can I make these and have them still be wonderful? Do they need to be served immediately or can I make day before my dinner party? Thank you!

Posted by Dear Mariam, Thank for your comment. Yes, you can make it a day before the dinner party and you can on 2013-02-08
Cooking and Cooking

Posted by mojgan on 2012-09-23
hi, by 1/5 teaspoon you mean 1 and half teaspoon?

Posted by Cooking and Cooking on 2012-09-23
Dear Mojgan, 1/5 teaspoon is one fifth of a teaspoon, divide a teaspoon by 5, use only one fifth.

Posted by mahboobeh on 2012-07-22
to make zolbia, can i use flour instead of corn starch?

Posted by Cooking and Cooking on 2012-07-22
Dear Mahboobeh, for making Zoolbia you need both corn starch and flour.

Posted by Mahin on 2011-08-15
I just love it. I have been looking and asking for this for so long. Thank you so much. I really made my day. How about Bameyeh? Do you knonw?

Posted by Dara on 2011-07-05
I love it, thank youuuuuuu!

Posted by Sepideh on 2011-05-22
can't thank you enough for the Zolbia Recipe!!! I'd been carving it for so long... :*********

Posted by Bijan on 2011-05-20
it was very delicious.

Posted by Peggy on 2011-04-28
Sounds like such a tasty treat!

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