Monday, August 8, 2016

Cook Colorful feel better

This is a food blog and I love sharing my recipes with the world. This time I need to say a few words about how we all feel at these strange and frustrating times. Most of us are in a state of unconsciousness, like you have taken stress pills or like the aftermath of an operation where you feel dizzy and can not really understand what is going around you, we want to wake up and go on with our lives but that does not happen. Since june last year nothing has been normal in this country. Many young men have been killed at fights with ISIS or PKK at our south eastern border, it almost became normal to listen to the news to hear more soldiers dying everyday, than the terrorist attacks in our major cities many more young people dying, and finally the unsuccessful coup that has terrorised our minds. So many conspiracy theories flying around we are trying to fish the reasonable ones to keep our sanity. What more, in Bodrum where we are you can not recognize any unease people are still on the beaches as if nothing is happening in the country, makes you sometimes think this all is imagination. Above all no more cruise lines visiting our harbours, no tourists taking any tours or cooking courses and having no income to hope for surviving and a better future for our children brings us to the borders of depression.

Could not put myself together to write another recipe since March but here I am and think cooking and cooking colorful make us all feel much better so here it goes, a classic Turkish Recipe called Imam Bayildi with a twist ;

Ingredients ;
1 red , 1 yellow, 1 green bell pepper all sliced thinly
1 carrot sliced thinly
1 onion sliced thinly
1 dried persimmon ( you can use any dry fruit like appricots, prunes etc)
10 small eggplants
7 - 8 wallnuts
1 spoon redwine vinigar
1/2 cup olive oil to fry the eggplants
1 bowl of water with 1 lemon sliced in it and 1 table spoon salt take away the bitterness of the eggplants.

Directions ;
Take the skin of the eggplants in stripes, and make a slit as shown on the picture below, make sure you do not cut all the way you will need to make small boats to fill in the stuffing. Place all the eggplants in the bowl with lemon and salt let is stay until you prepare the stuffing.

For the stuffing put 2 spoon fulls of olive oil in the pan stir fry all the vegetables, add persimmon and walnuts and add vinigar remove from heat.
Dry the eggplants with a kitchen towel and fry them with the rest of the olive oil. Once they are fried open up their bellies as on the above picture.  Place the eggplants in a pyrex pan than fill in the stuffing we made earlier.

 Add 1/2 cup of water and bake for 25 minutes at 180 C
Serve together with other Turkish Mezze.
Bon Apetit !

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Oven roasted Baby Zucchini's

 When these baby zucchinis arrive at the markets, this is a must do. If you ever grow zucchinis in your garden you know, how good the crop can be you, you would not know what to do with them.
Well this is one good way to cook them easy and super delicious.

Ingredients ;
6 baby Zucchinis
6 sticks of mozeralla or feta cheese
2 cloves of garlic crushed
paprika, nigella seeds, oregano
1/6 cup of olive oil

 Mix olive oil and the herbs some salt and black pepper, spare a small amount and use the rest to cover the cheese, let the cheese stay in this mixture for one hour  .
Cut the zucchinis as shown in the pictures, make sure you do not cut the zucchini to the end you need to leave a small space at the bottom to make sure they to do not fall apart. Than rub the zucchinis with the olive oil mixture but add a little bit more salt before you rub them. Let these wait an hour too. After one hour line your oven tray with baking paper, stuff the cheese in the zucchinis, cook at 180 C (350 F) for about 15 minutes. We like them a little cruchie if you like to have a soft texture than you will need to cook for 30 minutes.
Bon Apetite !  Afiyet olsun !

Monday, January 25, 2016

Quince in Olive Oil

In Turkey, we love cooking with Quince. Most popular in Turkish Cuisine is a delicous dessert served with clotted cream or it can be cooked in a clay pot with lamb a mind blowing main course. Apart from these most popular dishes thinly sliced quince is a side snack to drink raki ( in Greece it is Ouzo, in Lebanon it is Araq, in France it becomes Pernot ) With my back ground, from the western part of Turkey where we eat everything with olive oil, I created this recipe which became one of the most populars in our restaurant, Quince in olive oil with Raki !

Ingredients ;
4 Quince's chopped into bite size squares ( approx 1,5 kg), tossed in water with 1 spoon flour and 1 sliced lemon
1 big or 2 small onions sliced very thin
1 table spoon sugar
1/2 cup chopped fresh fennel
1 spoon raki or ouzo or pernot
1/3 cup olive oil

Directions :
Fry the onions with sugar in olive oil, when they start to turn their color, add the sieved quince to the mixture and stir. When it starts brizzling again than add 2 spoons from the water you have taken the quinces out. Few minutes later add the raki cook for another 5 minutes and add the fennel close the lid and cook for another 5 minutes. Let it cool and serve.

Afiyet Olsun ( Bon Apetite !)

* Special thanks to Shelley Tepperman for the pictures

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Milky puff Boreks

I have been a lazy cook book author to be, this winter. My recipes had to wait, many family affairs going on when your parents get older but the best thing was our first grand doughter arrived in November could not help knitting for a baby girl after 3 boys.

Recipe for Milky Puff Böreks

Ingredients ;
4 Yufka's ( Filo's about 1 kg ) devided into 6 big triangles.
1 cup milk
1 spoon baking powder
1/2 cup feta cheese mashed
1/2 cup ricotta
1 bunch of parsley chopped
1/2 bunch of dill chopped 
1 egg for the stuffing
1 egg for the batter
1/4 cup sunflower oil
Mix the two cheeses together, add parsley and dill and whip the egg into the cheese mixture and the baking powder.
Prepare the batter add the egg to the milk whip, and add oil salt and pepper.
On each triangle pieces of filo put the cheese mixture at the bottom of the triangle like you are rolling cigars, than from one end roll them into a rose. Put these roses in a greased pyrex pan and add the batter, put all of them into the fridege for minimum 1 hour. 
 Line a oven tray with baking paper and take the roses out of the milk batter and line them into the tray sprinkle with black sesamee or poppy seeds or sesame and bake in the oven until they are golden brown for about 20 minutes.
Bon apetite, Afiyet olsun. 

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Carrots in Yoghurt

This one of the favorites of our Turkish cooking classes. Carrots, walnuts and yoghurt are very good for your health and this is also yummy!
Ingredients ;
1/2 kg grated carrots
4 cloves of garlic crushed
1 cup thick yoghurt ( Greek Yoghurt or strained yoghurt)
1/4 cup walnuts cracked
1/4 tea spoon cinnamon (powder)
1/4 tea spoon cloves (powder)
1/2 tea spoon allspice
salt and pepper to taste
4 Spoons late harvest olive oil
2 Spoons walnut oil
4 Spoons early harvest olive oil

 Directions ;
Put late harvest olive oil in a pan and add grated carrots, crushed garlic, and walnuts stir fry them until the carrots start to change their colors about 6 -7 minutes, than add the spices, salt and pepper,
cook for 5 more minutes than add the walnut oil.
In a mixing bowl mix early harvest oliveoil with the yoghurt, when the carrot mixture cools slightly than add the yoghurt mixture and serve it topped with whole walnuts.
Afiyet Olsun, Bon apetite !

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Fresh green beans in olive oil

Green Beans are a classic in Turkish cooking, when they are in season you will see it almost in every meal anywhere you go. If you eat it in Istanbul there is more sugar in the recipes but if you eat them further south much less. Some cook it with chopped onions some cook it with spring onions.
I will give the recipe of my mother, it took me ages to understand why hers was so special.
After following her step by step I know now it is the touch of her hand. I hope you will like this one.

Ingredients ;
1 kg fresh green beans
2 spoon fulls of sugar
1 bunch of chopped green onions
1 grated tomato
1/2 cup Olive Oil
1/2 cup water ( this is tricky, if the green beans are juicy you might have to add less water, my suggestion is to start with small amounts and add slowly if necessary )
pinch of salt and black pepper

Peel the beans as on the picture below, on both sides.
Squeeze chopped green onions salt pepper and sugar with your hand in a bowl and when they mix well than add the tomato puree and mix well.
 Place the peeled beans in a pan, top it with the onion mixture, add olive oil and water. Place the pan on the stove bring it to boil on high heat than reduce the heat and cook for 40 more minutes at low heat. Serve luke warm or cold.

It will stay in the fridge for 3 to 5 days. It will taste the best the day after cooking.
Afiyet olsun, bon apetite

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Eggplants in olive oil and citrus juice

Ingredients ;

Before cooking
a bowl full of water
1 spoon flour
1 lemon cut in to 4 pieces
pinch of salt

To Cook
5 – 6 Aubergines
1/4 Cup Virgin Olive Oil
5 - 6 Garlic Cloves
2 Onions
2 Tea Spoons Granulated Sugar
Black Pepper
Grinded Nutmeg
1 cup Orange or tangerine juice

Peel the aubergines and cut them into 4 pieces, to take its bitterness put them in a container with water lemon juice and salt and a spoon full of flour.
Cut the onions in slices, on top of the stove take a pan pour the olive oil and add the onions salt and black pepper than add sugar, after the onions turn transparent place the aubergines on top of them after squeezing the water out of them. Sprinkle  grinded nutmeg on the top add orange juice and cook on the stove with min heat for about 30 min. Cool and serve with fresh parsley or thin slices of dried pepper on top. Afiyet Olsun ( Bon Apetite)