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turkish cuisine

Turkish cuisine is considered to be one of the three main cuisines of the world due to its variety of recipes and its distinctive tastes. Olive oil is one of the most frequently used ingredients. Dolma (stuffed) dishes are the queen of Turkish dishes which are olive-oil based. Vegetables such as vine leaves, green peppers, tomatoes and aubergines are stuffed with rice and spices and served cold. Green beans, leeks and artichokes cooked in olive oil are served as main od side dishes.

turkish cuisine

Cheese is a popular menu staple especially at breakfast. There are a great many regional cheeses, with white cheese and kasar being the most popular. Turkish breakfasts can be delicious or mundane, depending on the freshness and variety of the ingredients. The best breakfasts consist of warm fresh bread, creamy white cheese, butter, honey and home-made preserves, home-cured black and green olives, garden fresh sliced tomatoes and and a farm-fresh boiled egge. Tea is the traditional breakfast bevarage. Other options for breakfasts are simit (a chewy doughnut-shaped sesame bread), menemen (a scrambled mixture of eggs, tomatoes and chilly peppers) or a börek (cheese or minced filled flaky pastry.)

The variety of snacks can be plentiful and provide a welcome alternative to the hamburgers and pizza offered in tourist cafes. Lahmacun, a thin round bread with spicy minced meat topping, can be tasty, and in seaside resorts, midye tava (deep-fried mussels) can be found. More than 100 types of fish inhabit the seas surrounding three sides of tha Anatolian peninsula. Having ascertained the day's catch, samples of which may be presented to you, you can proceed to grilled (izgara) or panfried (tava) fish, served wiht lemon wedges , or sometimes cooked in liquid (bugulama), flavoured with tomatoes and onions. In Turkey, sauces served with fish are not very common. A perfect dish is always accompanied by a green salad and a glass of raki.

turkish cuisine

Raki, the main alcoholic drink of Turkey, is made from grapes and anise and is best when comsumed along side a leisurely meal of mezes (appetizers). These 'starters' are served on small plates and include fresh salads, white cheese, lakerda (pickled tuna), Arnavut Cigeri or deep fried liver served with fresh onion rings, mussels stuffed with rice, çiroz (sun-dried fish), dolmas, pickles, sigara böregi (long thin cheese pastry) and many more. Börek is a flaky Turkish pastry stuffed with cheese, vegetables or meat. It comes in countless varieties, depanding on the region. Su böregi and talas böregi are among the choicest options in this category.

Turkish coffee, drunk after each meal and on every possible occassion, is unique in its preparation and taste (the coffee is stirred in cold water in a cezve -a pot with a hadle and boiled until it produces a foam. The foam is poured into the cup and the remaining part is boiled once more.) Some Turkish culinary specialities have a world-wide reputation. Lokum-Turkish delight is one of them. This is starch boiled in sugar syrup to which hazelnut or pistachio is added. Almond and pistachio fundants are some of the rich Trusih treats that are exported throughout the world.

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