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I teach Turkish cooking classes in England,Turkey & USA, hope you can join us!,
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Turkish cuisine provides healthy, hearty, delicious food for family and friends.
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Salads

Ozlem’s Turkish Table Cookery Book – in the making!

Merhaba dear All,

I hope you are all well. Apologies for a bit of silence from my end; it’s been a very busy few months with teaching Turkish cookery in England, Istanbul and in Amman – Jordan, as well as being a part of exciting events like the Taste of London, thanks to Turkish Tourism Board – UK’s kind invitation; it was great to share Turkish cuisine with everyone.

But the main event that kept me busy has been the preparation for my Turkish cookery book. It’s been very exciting and busy getting the content ready and the photo shoots excitement last week all of a sudden made this special project very real. Here I wanted to share a little glimpse of our very exciting and labor of love 5 day photo shoot for my Turkish cookery book. My very special thanks goes to the amazing food photographer dear Sian Irvine, who passionately shot each and every image with a huge expertise, I can’t thank her enough. Over 70 dishes have been lovingly prepared and photographed, with huge thanks to an army of dear friends who helped during the shoots and gave their plates and bowls to be used as props. A labor of love in making but so worth it, enjoyed every minute of it:

Getting ready for the Turkish breakfast spread photo shoot

Turkish breakfast spread, almost there, one of my favorite chapters in the book! Love all the freshness and abundance of Turkish cuisine.

My dear publishers George and Brenda at GB Publishing, most kindly let us use their wonderful space for our photo shoot for 5 days and their living room became our “Prop Room” with a vast collection of plates, bowls, textile, boards and more, our huge thanks to them for their kindness – in return, we made sure they sampled each and every dish after the shoot !:)

Here’s our prop room!

More of the prop room!

A close up on a part of the Turkish breakfast spread – I can eat this all day long!

Getting the spices ready for the photo shoot – essential part of southern Turkish cookery

The crew getting the fresh produce shoot ready

Sian is shooting the mezze spread – another highlight from the book

All curious eyes checking the images over the Image man Jonny’s expert hands

Some of the absolutely fabulous dear friends, Heleen, Ann and Susie here, helping out during the shoots and the lovely Sian, my sincere gratitude each and every one of them

My publishers George, Brenda, our lovely photographer Sian and some of the fabulous friends helping, dear Susie and Claire here- sitting down after the shot and enjoying the food we produced together. My huge thanks also goes to dear Mina, Ellie and Leonie who helped out and kindly packed us all up!

I hope you enjoy having a little glimpse of our 5 day photo shoot with over 70 dishes lovely prepared and presented – a labor of love in making and so very special. My photos really don’t do enough justice, I can’t wait for you to see the real images, they are absolutely amazing.

This Turkish cookery book project is a tribute to my homeland and a very dear project to my heart, a dream come true! It will have a special focus on Southern Turkish cuisine though my favorite, classic Turkish recipes will also be featured. I have so longed to share my homeland’s bountiful, delicious, healthy cuisine, packed with culinary traditions and high on hospitality, generosity and warmth, along with my personal stories; I really can’t wait to share this special book with you all. Many of you so kindly filled in my Turkish cookery book Survey with your valuable feedback, my sincere thanks. If you haven’t had a chance to do yet and may be able to fill in, your feedback would be greatly appreciated it to help shape the book.  As a thank you, if you leave your name and email address at the end of the survey, you will be entitled to a 10% discount when the book is published. I would be more than happy to send you a signed copy!

We plan to start the pre-orders for the book as of end October, with a worldwide publication as of March 2018, I so look forward to sharing this special book with you all!

My best wishes for a wonderful summer – I will be back home, Turkey and I can not wait – and I will be in touch on my return. In the meantime, I wanted to share one of my favorite salads, Antakya’s Cokelek Salatasi – crumbled feta cheese salad with spices; perfect for Turkish breakfast and brunch.

Cokelek Salata; crumbled white cheese or feta salad, flavored with spices and olive oil

Afiyet Olsun,

Ozlem

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Piyaz Salad with red onions, tomatoes, parsley and sumac

Piyaz Salad with red onions, tomatoes, parsley and sumac

Piyaz Salad with red onions, tomatoes, parsley and sumac

We had a delicious Turkish cookery class at the Divertimenti Cookery School in London on Jan. 29th with enthusiastic participants. This vibrant and easy Piyaz Salad with red onions, tomatoes and parsley, flavored with sumac was a big hit from the class. It is a traditional salad at home, especially popular alongside Turkish meatballs, Kofte, as well as Lahmacun, Turkish thin pizza with minced meat and vegetables topping. I love the tangy sumac with the red onions in this salad, gives a refreshing, zingy flavor, so delicious.

Rolling Piyaz Salad inside Lahmacun, delicious

Rolling Piyaz Salad inside Lahmacun, delicious

We also made Lahmacun, thin Turkish pizza with minced/ground meat topping at our Turkish cookery class – another big hit! – We then placed some Piyaz Salad in the middle of Lahmacun and rolled to eat, as we do it traditionally at home. Such a wonderful combination. Here’s my Lahmacun recipe, if you like to make it at home.

Wonderful participants of my Jan. 29th Turkish Cookery Class at Divertimenti Cookery School, London.

Wonderful participants of my Jan. 29th Turkish Cookery Class at Divertimenti Cookery School, London.

My next Turkish Cookery Class is on March 13th at Blid & Hatton Gatherings – only a few spots left- and on April 8th at Divertimenti Cookery School, with Pistachio lamb kebabs, baked courgette with feta & dill and many more. Here’s more information on my Turkish Cookery Classes, hope you can join us.

I hope you enjoy this easy, delicious, healthy Piyaz Salad, Afiyet Olsun,

Ozlem

5.0 from 1 reviews
Piyaz Salad with red onions, tomatoes, parsley and sumac
 
This vibrant and healthy Piyaz Salad gets ready in no time and it is so delicious. Red onions and tomatoes work very well with the tangy sumac; we tradionally enjoy this salad with Lahmacun, Turkish thin pizza with minced/ground meat topping, as well as Turkish meatballs. It is also a lovely salad served with cheese, olives and hummus.
Author:
Recipe type: Salads
Cuisine: Turkish Cuisine
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 3 medium tomatoes, quartered and roughly chopped
  • 1 red onion, halved and thinly sliced
  • 1 bunch of flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 15ml/1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 10 ml/2 teaspoon ground sumac
  • ½ teaspoon paprika flakes – optional –
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Rub and work sumac and the salt into the onion slices with your hands really well (this will soften the onions and help spices infuse in well).
  2. Stir in the chopped tomatoes, parsley and paprika flakes, combine well.
  3. Wisk together the extra virgin olive oil and lemon juice and pour over the piyaz salad. Season with more salt (if needed) and freshly ground black pepper.
  4. Serve Piyaz Salad with feta cheese, olives and/or hummus for a delicious spread. Piyaz Salad is also the ultimate accompaniment of Lahmacun and Turkish meatballs, kofte.
 

 

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Gavurdagi Salad Variation with watercress, pomegranates, walnuts

Gavurdagi Salad Variation with pomegranates, watercress and walnuts – image credit; jennychef.com

There is one tomato salad that you often come across wherever you are in Turkey; Gavurdagi Salad. Named after the Gavur mountain, part of Tarsus mountains in Southeast part of Turkey, this delicious salad is from the Gaziantep region, where many wonderfully delicious and spicy Turkish dishes come from. Gavurdagi Salad won’t typically have walnuts in it but I love the marriage of sweet and juicy tomatoes with the crunchy walnuts in my version here. The sweet and sour pomegranate molasses dressing, Nar Eksisi really complements this salad too. Here’s my recipe to if you like to make pomegranate molasses, Nar Eksisi, at home.

We made this wonderful salad at my Turkish cookery class on Dec. 14th with more variation; I added watercress and pomegranate seeds to my salad for extra freshness and texture. It really worked well and everyone greatly enjoyed it! My sincere thanks to dear Jenny for the salad image here from our Turkish cookery class. Jenny also happens to be a passionate cook and cookery teacher, please check her blog JennyChef !

Gavurdagi salad is an important part of the meze spread at kebab houses in Turkey, served with the delicious Turkish pide bread, butter and the crumbly Turkish white cheese.  You can also enjoy this delicious and easy salad as a starter or accompaniment to grills, kebabs like my home made Iskender Kebab and casseroles.

My very best wishes to you all for the Festive Season and New Year, in good health and happiness. Saglikli, Mutlu bir Yeni Yil Dilegiyle,

Ozlem

5.0 from 3 reviews
Gavurdagi Salad Variation with watercress, pomegranates, walnuts
 
Named after the Gavur mountain, part of Tarsus mountains in Southeast part of Turkey, this delicious salad originates from the Gaziantep region, where many wonderfully delicious and spicy Turkish dishes come from. This time, I made a variation of this wonderful salad and I added watercress walnuts and pomegranate seeds for extra freshness and texture, worked really well. You can enjoy this delicious and easy salad as a starter or accompaniment to grills, kebabs like my home made Iskender Kebab and casseroles.
Author:
Recipe type: Healthy Salads
Cuisine: Turkish Cuisine
Serves: 3
Ingredients
  • 3 medium tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 200 gr watercress
  • ¼ onion, finely chopped
  • Handful of flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 50gr/2oz/1/3 cup walnuts, crushed – about pea size each –
  • 15ml/1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 30ml/2 tbsp pomegranate molasses
  • 5ml/1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 5ml/1 tsp sumac – optional-
  • Salt and ground black pepper to taste
  • ⅓ pomegranate seeds to serve
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, rub the chopped onions with the spices and seasoning; salt, sumac, red pepper flakes and ground black pepper – that will soften the onion and enable the spices to blend in well.
  2. Add the tomatoes, parsley and walnuts to the onions.
  3. Then stir in the pomegranate molasses and the extra virgin olive oil and give them a good (but gentle) mix.
  4. Stir in the watercress and combine well.
  5. Sprinkle pomegranate seeds over the salad and serve.
  6. Afiyet olsun.

29th January 2017 Turkish Cookery Class -a wonderful foodie gift

Lahmacun, popular Turkish thin pizza with ground meat and vegetables topping, will be at our Jan. 29th class

Lahmacun, popular Turkish thin pizza with ground meat and vegetables topping, will be at our Jan. 29th class

Leeks, carrots, onions and rice cooked in olive oil; Zeytinyagli Pirasa

Leeks, carrots, onions and rice cooked in olive oil; Zeytinyagli Pirasa, is at our Jan. 29th 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 the 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 walnutsTurkish Coffee and Turkish Delight.

Turkish coffee, enjoyed by everyone at our Turkish cookery course.

Turkish coffee, rituals and how to make it will be presented by Ozerlat Coffee at our Jan. 29th class

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

 

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