Persian Spinach and Yogurt Dip (Borani Esfanaj)

Persian Spinach and Yogurt Dip (Borani Esfanaj) Recipe
Variations of this Persian Borani Esfanaj dish are popular throughout the Mediterranean region. We like the thick, creamy texture of organic yogurt, though you can use any kind of plain, fat-free yogurt. Letting the dip stand before refrigerating it allows flavors to meld. To minimize prep time, you can use frozen spinach, chopped and squeezed dry, and omit the first step. Serve with crudités, pita, or crispy flatbread.

Worthy of a special occasion


13 servings (serving size: about 2 tablespoons)

Recipe from

Cooking Light

Nutritional Information

Calories 20
Caloriesfromfat 32 %
Fat 0.7 g
Satfat 0.3 g
Monofat 0.3 g
Polyfat 0.0 g
Protein 1.5 g
Carbohydrate 2.8 g
Fiber 0.3 g
Cholesterol 2 mg
Iron 0.6 mg
Sodium 121 mg
Calcium 47 mg


2 quarts water
1 (10-ounce) package fresh spinach, chopped
2 teaspoons butter
1/3 cup finely chopped sweet onion
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup plain fat-free organic yogurt (such as Stonyfield Farm)
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon


Bring 2 quarts water to a boil in a Dutch oven. Add fresh spinach, and cook for 1 minute. Drain well. Place spinach on several layers of paper towels; squeeze until barely moist.

Melt butter in a medium nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion and garlic; cook 6 minutes or until onion is tender, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; stir in spinach and salt. Cool to room temperature.

Combine spinach mixture, organic yogurt, black pepper, and ground cinnamon in a medium bowl. Let stand for 30 minutes. Refrigerate until chilled.


Domenica Marchetti,

November 2005
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