About Turkish Cusine
Turkish cuisine is known to be one of the world’s best. It is considered to be one of the three main cuisines of the world because of the variety of its recipes, its use of natural ingredients, its flavours and tastes.

Turkish cuisine is mainly the heritage of Ottoman cuisine, which can be described as a fusion of Central Asian, Middle Eastern and Balkan cuisines. With a long history, the Turks have a rich culinary culture which is evident in the rich variety of foods.

Turkey is one of the seven countries in the world that is self-sufficient in food production which means that Turkish food is usually made from fresh, local ingredients to create the freshest dishes.

The most important meal of the day ; BREAKFAST
The standard Turkish breakfast includes bread, butter, jam, honey, olives, tomatoes, cucumbers, cheese, Turkish sausage, yogurt, eggs, fresh warm bread and tea. Occasionally, borek, pide, soups can be a part of breakfast. The Turkish word for breakfast "kahvaltý" can be translated as "before coffee". So, as you may guess, Turkish coffee is not drunk during breakfast, rather after breakfast or in the afternoon. A traditionally brewed black tea is an indispensable part of breakfast.

Something very special : BOREK
Delicious savoury pasties, made with thin dough (yufka), layered, rolled or folded around the ingredients. Preferred fillings are cheese, minced meat, spinach and potatoes. Borek can be baked, cooked on a griddle or fried. Great as snack, a side for soups and salads or as a small meal on their own.

LUNCH
Turks generally eat vegetables for lunch. Along with grains, vegetables are also consumed in large quantities in the Turkish diet. A vegetable dish can be a main course in a Turkish meal. Vegetable dishes usually tend to be served with its own water (the cooking water). Minced meat can also be added to a vegetable dish but vegetable dishes that are cooked with olive oil are often served cold and do not contain meat.

Since the vegetables that are cultivated in Turkey are truly delicious, a simple dish like this, eaten with fresh bread, is a satisfying meal for many people.

When talking vegetables, it is important to know that the eggplant (or aubergine) has a special place in the Turkish Cuisine. Known to be cooked in 40 different ways !

Dolma ; is the name used for stuffed vegetables. Many vegetables can be used, most typically green peppers, eggplants, tomatoes, zucchini or vine leaves. Dolma can be either filled with meat mix or rice mix.

The meat mix dolma is a main-course dish eaten with yoghurt sauce while rice mix dolma is cooked with olive oil and eaten at room temperature. The green pepper dolma with rice mix is the queen of all dolmas.

In the hot Turkish summer days a vegetable dish would be ideal for lunch.

DINNER
A typical Turkish diner would start with meze’s. "Meze" is the general category of dishes that are brought in small quantities as starters. These are eaten, along with wine or more likely with "raký" (lion’s milk!).

Typical meze menu includes dried and marinated fish, fresh salad greens in thick yogurt sauce and garlic, plates of cold vegetable dishes cooked or fried in olive oil, fried crispy savoury pastry, deep-fried mussels and calamari served in sauce, tomatoe and cucumber salad, and fish eggs in a sauce.

The main course can be fish or meat plate.

Always fresh : FISH
Four seas (The Black Sea, the Sea of Marmara, the Aegean, and the Mediterranean) surround the Turkish landscape making Turkey a fish paradise. To mention best known fishes of Turkey ; grey mullet, sea bass, red mullet, cipura, sole fish, angler fish, sea bream, sword fish, grouper and many more.

Every month has its own preferred catch. Grilling fish over charcoral, where the fish juices hit the embers and envelope the fish with the smoke, is perhaps the most delicious way of eating fish.

MEAT
When it comes to meat, lamb and chicken are Turkish favourites, and are typically prepared as ‘’kebab’’. Kebab simply means ‘’roasted’’. The traditional meat for kebab is lamb, however depending on the local tastes it can also be beef, goat, chicken, fish and seafood.

The most familiar Turkish kebap is "sis kebab" with chunks of lamb roasted on a skewer over charcoal grill. ‘"döner kebab" is lamb meat roasted by slowly turning vertical spit and sliced off when done. It can be laid on a bed of flat bread and topped with tomatoe sauce and butter. Meatballs "Köfte" is prepared with minced meat being mixed with special spices, eggs, unions and shaped into balls.

"Kebab" is just like "börek" is a typical Turkish food coming from nomadic Turks.

Most Favourite Turkish DESSERTS
When mentioning Turkish desserts, one will probably think of Turkish Delight and Baklava ! However, the variety of the main meals and meze’s also exists in the desserts.

"Baklava" – a rich, sweet pastry filled with chopped pistachio or walnuts and sweetened with syrup – is usually eaten with coffee, as a snack or after a kebab meal. Turkish cuisine has a range of  baklava-like desserts which includes söbiyet, bülbül yuvasi, saray sarmasi etc.

"Kadayif" is also a common Turkish dessert made with shredded dough (yufka), pistachio or walnuts.

Milk desserts ; puddings made of starch and rice flower, originally without eggs or butter are another great addition to the Turkish dessert range and are well worth trying.

Helva is one of the oldest Turkish sweet and has a very thorough past. It is considered Balkan and East Mediterranean originated and arrived Anatolia before Turks. Today helva is still a very popular sweet in Turkey, and whatever their religion is, all Turks serve helva on special occasions such as Ramadan, Kandil and other holly days, but especially to mark births and deaths.

FRUITS
Turkey, due to its nature, is one of the richest countries in the world in terms of fruit production. For most of the spring and summer, fruit is eaten fresh.

Strawberries start in spring along with cherries and apricots; peaches, figs, watermelons and melons are the life-savers of hot summer days, grapes ripen in late summer and oranges and bananas take their place as the winter fruit. You can find hundreds of varieties of a single fruit such as pears, apples, grapes in Turkey.



Ceremonial part of Turkish culture and life is TEA


"Conversations without tea are like a sky without the moon" Folk saying from Sivas Turkey.

Visitors usually wonder how it is prepared ; Turks prepare tea using a double tea pot. Water is boiled in the lower (larger) pot and the tea is steeped in the top (smaller) pot. Tea must brew for 10-15 minutes. This method allows each person to drink the tea as they desire: strong and steeped, or light with lots of water added.


Ceremonial part of Turkish culture and life is TURKISH COFFEE

Coffee for Turks is not simply a drink, but it has its own history, coffeehouses, rituals, own rules of when and how to drink it… and even a tradition of fortune-telling by reading the coffee grinds at the bottom of the coffee cup !

If you want to try ; put your coffee cup holder on top of your coffee cup, make three horizontal circles with your cup, and then with a quick movement turn the coffee cup with the cup holder upside down.

This will slowly bring down the coffee grinds along the coffee cup and will form all the patterns to tell you about your future !

Have you seen a horse shape, your wish will come true. 
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