Thoughts on Turkish Cuisine

As I sit here, quite hungry, in the Munich airport, I can’t help but think of the delectable gastronomical feasts that await me in Istanbul.

Turkish cuisine certainly left a lasting impression on me during my first trip to Turkey last summer. Perhaps one of the most distinguishing features of Turkish food, at least in my opinion, is its contrast.

İskender kebap is a prime example (see picture below).

Iskender Kebap (Image Source: Wikimedia Commons)

The savory strips of lamb, basted in a rich tomato sauce, rest on a bed of pita bread are smothered in clarified sheep butter (and often re-smothered multiple times during the meal, from a frothing pan of butter). The contrast comes in the form of a tangy yogurt.

Another example of contrast in Turkish cuisine would be kaymak. This dairy product is similar to a thick cream or clotted cream and is often eaten with honey.

For more about Turkish cuisine, follow Anthony Bourdain as he tours Istanbul in No Reservations.