Shahs of Sunset star Asa Soltan Rahmati is getting ready to kick off the New Year right. Yes, you read that correctly. March 21 marks the Persian New Year, which also celebrates the beginning of spring.
For those who aren't familiar with the holiday, Asa is breaking it all down for the Daily Dish. "[Nowruz] is a new year and a new beginning," she says of the annual celebration. "We are very ritualistic people. It's a great time to leave the problems from last year in the past and move into the new year fresh."
Of course, most people celebrated the New Year back in January. But Asa says this holiday is important for a different reason. "Family," she says. "What I love about our Nowrooz parties is that it's always a mix of old, young, friends and family. I have always mixed my friends and family. Because that's what your friends become, family. It's the best!'
With Nowruz set for Saturday, Asa reveals her tips for celebrating the big occasion the right way.
It's All About the Food
Asa notes that for your bash, it's about what you're eating—and who is cooking it. "The secret is inviting all your loved ones, family, and closest friends, and making sure to hire the best Kabobi guy in town to come and bbq in your yard, right there in front of everyone," she says. "That sets the party off right."
Fish Should Also Be on the Menu
In addition to the barbecue, Asa notes that the menu needs to include several other staples. "It's traditional to eat fish with dill rice at the actual countdown to spring equinox/Nowrooz," she says. "Our actual big party, which is the next day and my birthday (yes I'm a Nowrooz baby), it's a full-on kabob fest. Live. With all the fixings."
Make Sure There's Plenty to Drink
From traditional tea to cocktails, Asa says that there needs to be an assortment of beverages for you and your guests to sip on. "Lots of Persian tea," she says. "And, of course, I got everybody's favorite drink down. I personally drink single malt scotch and a very spicy and extremely lime heavy gin and ginger ale. My girl GG also has gotten hooked on my drink. Reza and Adam drink Whiskey with ginger ale. MJ likes a stiff screw driver. And Mike likes red bull and vodka."
Make the Perfect Playlist
In addition to the food and drinks, what you're listening to while you're chowing down is also very important. Obviously. "Good music, a combination of OG Persian music and also new stuff," she says. "I like to really mix it up with an amazing playlist. Then after we eat in my family everybody gets down to Bandari music. We are from the South and our music is krazy and we dance!"
As for specific tunes she prefers, Asa says, "An OG Bandari song is 'Helelyos' by Ziad. A new one is my song with legendary Andy called 'Bandar.'"
Don't Micromanage the Bash
In the end, it's really just about having a good time so don't stress it too much. "Don't try to control the party," she says. "Let groups form and live. In our parties we have a few outdoor areas, inside areas, and people gravitate to different groups."
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