Fish Buryan

Fish Buryan is one of the recipes that was added later to Sirvani’s book. It is one of the important tastes in 15th century.

I made a few changes to make it possible to prepare this recipe at home.

Here, I am sharing the recipe with my recommendations.


Fish Buryan

Difficulty 7 out of 10
Servings 4


  • 2 sea bass 450 - 600 gr.
  • 1/2 cup rosewater
  • 2 teaspoons sumac
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 3 cloves of garlic ground
  • 1/2 cup ground walnuts
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon mastic
  • 1/2 cup sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pinch saffron


  1. Sea bass is a scaly fish. If they were not removed when you bought the fish, you have to remove all of them. Gut the fish and make sure you remove all the blood. Wash them well.
  2. Season the fishes with salt.
  3. Mix and ground the saffron in rosewater and let it give out its colour.
  4. Add sesame oil to the rosewater and marinade the fishes inside and out with this mixture. Let the fish rest 1 -1.5 hours.
  5. Boil water in a large skillet and poach the fishes for a short while. (see note 1)

  6. Prepare a mixture with sumac, dried oregano, crushed garlic, ground walnuts, ground coriander seeds, cinnamon, cumin, mastic and salt. Fill the fish with this mixture. (see note 2)

  7. Buryan is normally made in a tandoor without adding any water. If you don't have a tandoor, place the fishes in a suitable earthenware, or glass ovenware.
  8. Make sure you cover the fish properly. Aluminium foil is ideal, but you can also use baking paper.
  9. Place the fish in a preheated oven to 200°C for 40 -50 minutes.
  10. Enjoy.

Recipe Notes

Note 1: Poaching the fish to lessen its smell is an Ottoman method. If you like the fish smell and also prefer to have the saffron's aroma, you can skip this step. Because, after poaching, even if the aroma of rosewater with saffron remained, we couldn't smell it.

Note 2: In the try we did while making the video, we did not slice the fish completely, fearing that it might lose its juiciness. In our second try, we cut the sea bass into two fillets, did not poach after marinating with saffron rosewater and spread the spice mixture between slices as if making a sandwich and tied the slices together. In our opinion the second try was more delicious.