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Cookery Classes

I teach Turkish cooking classes in England,Turkey & USA, hope you can join us!,
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recipes

Recipes    

Turkish cuisine provides healthy, hearty, delicious food for family and friends.
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Appetizers and Mezes

Poached Eggs with Garlic Yoghurt, Turkish Style – Cilbir

Poached Eggs with Garlic Yoghurt, Turkish Style - Cilbir

Poached Eggs with Garlic Yoghurt, Turkish Style – Cilbir

We Turks love eggs done many different ways; one of our favorite ways to enjoy egg is as being poached and served over garlic yoghurt,  a special dish called Cilbir, in Turkish. Cilbir is generally enjoyed as a hot mezze though I like serving as lunch or a light supper, along with a refreshing salad like Coban Salata, Shepherd’s Salad with cucumbers, tomatoes, spring onions and some pide bread or crusty bread.

I also like to prepare a simple red pepper flakes infused olive oil sauce and pour this over the poached eggs with garlic yoghurt, just before serving. The delicious heat from the red pepper flakes complements the dish beautifully.

I hope you enjoy this simple yet very satisfying dish, Afiyet Olsun. Also, my very best wishes for a wonderful festive season to you all, in good health and happiness.

Ozlem

5.0 from 2 reviews
Poached Eggs with Garlic Yoghurt, Turkish Style - Cilbir
 
I hope you enjoy this delicious poached eggs in garlic yoghurt, Turkish Style, called Cilbir. I like to prepare a simple red pepper flakes infused olive oil sauce and pour this over the poached eggs with garlic yoghurt, just before serving. The delicious heat from the red pepper flakes complements the dish beautifully.
Author:
Recipe type: Vegetarian, eggs, Turkish Style
Cuisine: Turkish Cuisine
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 1 small garlic clove, crushed and chopped finely
  • 1 cup / 8 fl. oz. plain thick yoghurt, brought to room temperature
  • 2 large free range eggs
  • 30 ml / 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 30 ml / 2 tbsp. white wine vinegar
  • 10 ml / 2 tsp. Turkish pul biber, red pepper flakes or chili flakes
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Pide bread or crusty bread to serve
Instructions
  1. Prepare the garlic yoghurt first – about 10, 15 minutes before poaching the eggs – and bring to the room temperature.
  2. In a small bowl, beat the yoghurt with garlic and seasoning. Spoon this into two serving plates, creating a round thick layer to provide a nest for the poached egg. Let the yoghurt mixture reach the room temperature.
  3. Fill a small pan with hot water, add the vinegar (this will help sealing the egg whites) and bring to a boil. Stir the water to create a whirlpool and crack in the first egg.
  4. As the egg spins and the white sets around the yolk, stir the water ready for the next one. Poach each egg for 2-3 minutes so that the yolk remains soft.
  5. While the eggs are poaching, quickly pour in the olive oil in a small pan and stir in the Turkish pul biber, red pepper flakes or chili flakes, over medium to high heat. Stir and let the red pepper flakes infuse to olive oil for a few minutes, turn the heat off.
  6. Lift the eggs out of the water with a slotted spoon and place them over the garlic yoghurt spread.
  7. Drizzle the red pepper flakes infused olive oil over the poached eggs. Serve immediately with pide bread or crusty bread by the side.
  8. Coban Salata, Shepherd’s Salad with cucumbers, tomatoes, spring onions would also go well with this delicious poached eggs over garlic yoghurt, Cilbir; Afiyet Olsun.

Turkish Cookery Classes in January 2017  – can be a wonderful foodie gift

Wednesday, Jan 11th  – Turkish Pide Class at Blid & Hatton Gatherings, Cobham   – 1 space available

Sunday, Jan. 29th 2017 – Healthy, Hearty Turkish Supper with Ozlem-  at Divertimenti Cookery School

Lahmacun; Turkish thin pizzas with minced meat and vegetables topping, at our Jan. 29th Turkish Cookery Class

Lahmacun; Turkish thin pizzas with minced meat and vegetable, at our Jan. 29th Turkish Cookery Class

Get 2017 off to a healthy and wholesome start with my  selection of Turkish supper dishes from my homeland at our Turkish cookery class at Divertimenti Cookery School on Sunday, January 29th, 12 pm – 3.30 pm. Packed full of flavor and easily reproduced at home without having to spend hours at your cooker, you will be surprised at the simplicity of such stunning dishes. During the class you will also be joined by a Turkish coffee expert, Ozerlat Coffee, who will carefully demonstrate all the rituals behind Turkish coffee making whilst offering you plenty of opportunity for tastings. Menu will include ‘Mercimek Corbasi’ (Lentil soup with cumin and red pepper flakes), ‘Zeytinyagli Pirasa’ (Leeks and carrots with olive oil, rice and lemon), ‘Lahmacun’ (Turkish thin pizza with minced meat and vegetables), ‘Cezerye’ (Caramelised carrot delight with walnuts) Turkish Coffee and Turkish Delight.  

The classes would also make a wonderful gift for the festive season. You can view the class details and book through Divertimenti Cookery School at this link, hope you can join us!

Ozlem’s Turkish Table on Brooklands Radio

At Brooklands Radio, with Jill Bennett, talking about healthy Turkish Cuisine.

At Brooklands Radio, with Jill Bennett, talking about healthy Turkish Cuisine.

I had the pleasure of having an interview with Jill Bennet on healthy Turkish cuisine at the Brooklands Radio on Sunday, 27th November. It was wonderful to have a chance to talk and spread the word on wholesome, delicious Turkish cuisine – and had a flash back of happy memories of my amateur DJ days at Kent FM in Istanbul! – Here is the podcast link of our interview, if you like to listen to.

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Turkish Vegetarian Feast; Ideas from our Turkish Cookery Class

Merhaba All,

Talking about Turkish culinary heritage at Divertimenti Cookery School, London

Talking about Turkish culinary heritage at Divertimenti Cookery School, London

We had a delicious Turkish cookery class at the Divertimenti Cookery School in London last Sunday. It was wonderful to be hands on with 9 enthusiastic participants and create a Turkish feast. Here are some photos and recipes we made at our class, I hope they inspire you too.

Ezo Gelin Corba, Spicy Bulgur and Lentil Soup

Ezo Gelin Corba, Spicy Bulgur and Lentil Soup

Ezo Gelin corba, spicy bulgur and lentil soup flavored with dried mint and red pepper flakes, was one of the highlights of the class, everyone really enjoyed it and pleasantly surprised how easy it was. A wholesome, delicious soup you can prepare ahead of time and left overs freeze beautifully too.

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Turkish flat breads with crumbled feta, red pepper paste, za’atar mix

Biberli Ekmek, southern Turkish style flat breads with crumbled feta, za’atar and red pepper paste, was another easy recipe we did at the class. These flat breads take me back to my childhood in Antakya immediately, as my mother and grandma used to prepare the topping for the flat breads and we would take it to our local bakery to bake. Za’atar here is a delicious, aromatic blend of spice mix, including wild oregano, ground cumin, sesame seeds, crushed pistachio, crushed chickpeas and many more, utterly delicious.

Karides Guvec; baked prawn and vegetables casserole with grated cheese, from our Turkish cookery class

Karides Guvec; baked prawn and vegetables casserole with grated cheese, from our Turkish cookery class

Baked vegetables casserole with chickpeas and grated cheese

Baked vegetables casserole with chickpeas and grated cheese

We then had a go at the popular Karides Guvec, Prawn casserole with vegetables and grated cheese. A favorite starter at fish restaurants at home, it also makes a wonderful, easy to make main course. If you are not keen on prawns, you can take out and add cooked chickpeas to the mixture instead, as we did for an alternative version. Ground cumin goes well with chickpeas, as well as red pepper flakes for a delicious heat.

Potato and bulgur rolls, patatesli, bulgurlu kofte, with olive oil and pomegranate sauce

Potato and bulgur rolls, patatesli, bulgurlu kofte, with olive oil and pomegranate sauce

These gorgeous potato and bulgur rolls, Patatesli, bulgurlu kofte, with spring onions and red pepper flakes were another highlight. You can make them ahead of time and they are delicious dipped into olive oil & pomegranate molasses sauce.

Revani, semolina sponge cake, light and fragrant with lemon juice and lemon zest.

Revani, semolina sponge cake, light and fragrant with lemon juice and lemon zest.

Moist, delicious semolina sponge cake in light syrup, Revani, was our dessert. I love the lightness semolina gives to this dessert, also fragrant with lemon juice and lemon zest, so easy to make, here’s my Revani recipe.

Turkish coffee and its best accompaniment, Turkish Delight

Turkish coffee and its best accompaniment, Turkish Delight

Last but not least, we finished off with Turkish coffee, a perfect end to a Turkish meal, along with Turkish Delight. Turkish coffee is more than a drink for us Turks; we take time to pause and enjoy a delicious sip with a friend or to reflect. Here’s how to make Turkish coffee and its rituals, hope you enjoy it.

Enjoying the delicious Turkish feast we prepared together at the Divertimenti Cookery School

Enjoying the delicious Turkish feast we prepared together at the Divertimenti Cookery School

We then set down and enjoyed the fruits of our labor together, it was a great team effort! Due to popular demand, my Turkish vegetarian class will be repeated at the Divertimenti Cookery School in London on Saturday, April 30th, from 11 am to 2.30 pm. Here’s my cookery class details if you’d like to join us.

My best wishes and Afiyet Olsun to you all,

Ozlem

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Turkish Mezze Feast to Recreate at Home

Merhaba All,

I was back home, Istanbul, recently and as always it felt so good. As I get older, I find every opportunity to reconnect with my homeland is precious; seeing family and friends and soaking up the fascinating Istanbul.

Food of course, took the central stage and we gathered with family and friends over Turkish breakfast, sipping our Turkish coffee mid morning with my mother and my sister, and nice long dinners indulging in the delicious Turkish cuisine, especially the mezze feast.

Scrumptious Turkish mezze feast in Istanbul

I love our mezzes and I can just live on them for my dinner happily. Beautifully flavored with olive oil, lemon juice, spices, pomegranate molasses and nuts, they are not only delicious but very wholesome and easy to make. Below are some of my favorite mezzes; they are refreshing, delicious and you would be surprised to see how easy they are. I hope they inspire you to recreate some scrumptious mezzes at home.

Kisir; Spicy Bulgur Wheat Salad with Pomegranate Molasses

Kisir is a specialty in the southeast of Turkey, from where the country’s spicier dishes hail. It is offered as a welcome to the guests in the homes of Antakya, where my roots are from, and in Gaziantep. Kisir is generally made with nar eksisi (sour pomegranate molasses) instead of lemon juice – though it is common to use lemon juice for Kisir at northwest Turkey. It can be rolled into balls and served nestling in crunchy lettuce leaves. This dish is perfect for buffets or as part of a barbecue spread. It really is a “bowl of health and goodness” with fresh vegetables, bulgur – packed with fiber and pomegranate sauce, full of antioxidants.

Kisir, Spicy Bulgur Wheat Salad with Pomegranate Molasses

Kisir, Spicy Bulgur Wheat Salad with Pomegranate Molasses

This wonderful, refreshing can be prepared a couple of days in advance and can be stored in the fridge for 3-4 days. As a matter of fact, it tastes even better a day or two later it’s made! Here’s my Kisir recipe, hope you enjoy it.

Patlicanli Eksileme; Smoked eggplant salad with vegetables, parsley and dried mint

Patlicanli Eksileme, Smoked eggplant salad with vegetables, parsley and dried mint.

Patlicanli Eksileme, Smoked eggplant salad with vegetables, parsley and dried mint.

This is a wonderful, refreshing salad from southern Turkey, Antakya, and one of my favorites, featuring Turkey’s beloved eggplant, aubergine or “patlican”. Traditionally, the eggplant here is cooked over an open fire, which gives a delicious, smoky flavor. This dish can be served as part of a “mezze” – appetizer- or can accompany grilled meats. The dried mint really adds a wonderful flavor to this salad, most refreshing.

Lambs lettuce salad with garlic yoghurt; Yogurtlu semizotu salatasi

Lambs lettuce salad with garlic yoghurt; Yogurtlu semizotu salatasi

Lambs lettuce salad with garlic yoghurt; Yogurtlu semizotu salatasi

This lovely, refreshing salad is very easy and quick to make and makes a wonderful appetizer, meze or a side dish served with grilled meats, poultry and pasta. At home in the restaurants, this salad is served as part of a meze spread with warm pita bread, lovely feta cheese, hummus and olives. This combination also makes a wonderful and healthy lunch alternative. Watercress can replace the lamb lettuce well.

Oruk, baked icli kofte, a version of kibbeh; bulgur balls with walnut and ground meat filling

Oruk, baked icli kofte, a version of kibbeh; these bulgur balls with walnut and ground meat stuffing are a real treat.

Oruk, baked icli kofte, a version of kibbeh; these bulgur balls with walnut and ground meat stuffing are a real treat.

Oruk, or (Sam Orugu as they are also referred) the baked oval bulgur balls with delicious ground meat and walnuts filling, is a very popular dish at my hometown, Antakya (Antioch). It is a very special mezze that turns up at my mother’s table at every festive event and family gatherings. Antakya’s Oruk is a version of the delicious Kibbeh, which is considered to be the national dish of Lebanon. If you are an oruk, icli kofte or kibbeh fan, I hope you would give it a go and make these delicious treats at home. Yes, it does take a bit of a time & effort, but it is totally worth it; a very rewarding, satisfying experience and makes any day special. The leftovers also freeze beautifully.

Home made Turkish round flat bread, Pide Ekmek

Home made Turkish flat bread, Pide Ekmek

Home made Turkish flat bread, Pide Ekmek

Bread, ekmek is a major staple in Turkish cuisine and appears generously at breakfast, lunch and dinner and no mezze is complete without flat breads. Pide bread, Turkish flat bread is easy to cook at home; this version of pide has a crispy crust but soft in texture, great to serve with mezzes. Here’s my Pide bread recipe, hope you enjoy it.

I do hope these delicious mezzes inspire you to enjoy with family and friends, Afiyet Olsun!

Ozlem

Ortakoy, Istanbul

Ortakoy, Istanbul

 

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