Ali's Blogs

Top Turkish dishes to cook at home

31st July 2013

If you fancy yourself as the next Gordon Ramsay or Masterchef champion, then why not put your culinary skills to the test – in the comfort of your own home. 


Whether you like to bake, poach, roast or fry, there are a number of different Turkish dishes to tickle your taste buds. Now try saying that 10 times!


So what’s on the menu? Get your blenders and whisks at the ready as we run through some of the best Turkish dishes fit for any table.


Imam Bayildi
Considered to be one of the most iconic Turkish dishes, Imam Bayldi is a sublime vegetarian dish using the finest eggplant. 


They are beautifully braised and usually combined with onions as well as garlic and tomatoes. Translated as ‘the priest swooned,’ this seductive plate of food is delicately simmered in olive oil and cooked for around 2 hours. 


Lahmacun 
Known as ‘Turkish pizza,’ Lahmacun features finely chopped mincemeat alongside a melange of onions and several spices. It is normally served on very thin flaky dough creating a unique texture and consistency. 


Serve it with lettuce, fresh tomatoes or rocket, whilst adding a bit of lemon juice adds even more depth. 


Menemen
Ideal as a pick me up in the morning, this is sometimes eaten as a breakfast dish. Menemen comprises of peppers, onions and tomatoes which you should heat in a pan. 


Make sure it is hot and simply add eggs which can be done either fried or mixed along with the other vegetables. 


If you like things a little spicy then sprinkle a touch of paprika or black pepper and serve with bread.


Dolma
There are a wide variety of vegetables used in Turkish cooking and dolma is another favourite that will have your friends and family asking for seconds! 


It uses vine leaves which are then stuffed with eggplant, tomatoes or zucchinis. In addition, you can use rice, onions and various spices for a more individual dolma. 


Although it can be a marathon to prepare, both the results and empty plates are definitely worthwhile.


Köfte 
One of the most popular Turkish dishes, these meatballs comes in a variety of shapes. Want to discover the köfte lowdown? 


Main ingredients include lamb or mutton mince that’s blended together with breadcrumbs, finely chopped onions and spices. 


Izgara Köfte is a firm favourite which is normally grilled and finished with green peppers a little chopped parsley and red peppers.


Tip: Charcoal your peppers on the hob for a minute or so to obtain the perfect blackened look!


Mücver 
Another popular native dish, Mücver takes shredded zucchini which is mixed together with eggs and flour. 


You can also add cheese not to mention spring onions and mint for extra flavour. Lightly fry them off in either olive oil or vegetable oil and dive in.


Mantı
These dumplings have a wonderful history dating back to the Ottoman Empire during the 1600’s. These small bundles of joy are filled with minced lamb, chickpeas and finished with yoghurt, garlic and sumac. 


Add salt and a touch of pepper whilst finishing the dish with melted butter or dried mint is a new twist on an old recipe. 



Written by Simon Lazarus




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