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Sheermal bread made in Iran.jpg
Sheermal served in Iran.
Alternative namesShirmal
Place of originIran
Region or stateGreater Iran, later spread to North India with the arrival of Persianate Mughal rulers
Main ingredientsMaida, Milk, Ghee, Saffron

Sheermal or Shirmal (Persian-Urdu: شیرمال, Hindi: शीरमल), is a saffron-flavored traditional flatbread from Greater Iran.[1] The word sheermal is derived from the Persian words شیر (translit. sheer) meaning milk, and مالیدن (translit. malidan) meaning to rub. In a literal translation, sheermal means milk rubbed. After being introduced to North India by the Persianate Mughal emperors. It became a delicacy of Lucknow and Hyderabad.[2] It is also part of the Awadhi cuisine[3] and is enjoyed in Old Bhopal.


Sheermal is a mildly sweet naan made out of maida, leavened with yeast, baked in a tandoor or oven. Sheermal was traditionally made like roti. Today, sheermal is prepared like naan. The warm water in the recipe for naan roti was replaced with warm milk sweetened with sugar and flavored with saffron and cardamom. The final product resembles Danish pastry.

In Iran, there are slight regional variations in the preparation of sheermal. As such, sheermal is sometimes used as a souvenir when travelling between the regions.

Sheermal is sometimes served with Lucknow kababs or alongside nihari.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Sheermal, Persian Sweet Bread". Retrieved 5 October 2014.
  2. ^ "The Hindu : A nawabi affair". Retrieved 5 October 2014.
  3. ^ "A slice of the Awadh exotica". The Hindu. Retrieved 5 October 2014.