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Oklava: Recipes from a Turkish–Cypriot kitchen Hardcover – 4 May 2017
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This woman can bloody cook Evening Standard"
Swoon Time Out London"
This woman can bloody cook--Evening Standard
Keep an eye out for Selin Kiazim, because she is going places, in every conceivable way--The Times, London
Swoon--Time Out London --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Turkish-Cypriot dishes with a modern twistSee all Product description
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However I don't believe anyone has really tested the recipes as written in a domestic kitchen, as with so many recipe books by chefs it seems that the bulk recipes used in the restaurant have crept in here and there. All the portions are generous, but some are just ludicrous. For example the courgette fritter recipe says it serves 4-6 people, but uses 8 cougettes (presumably 1.5 - 2.0 kg, weight would help), and 800 g cheese. That's nearly a whole block per person! My usual recipe uses 500 g courgettes and 125 g cheese, make 16 fritters, perfect for 4. Similarly some of the salad dressings seem to make enough for a stock amount, far more than required for the veg.
On the other hand the cemen recipe says it makes a kg. First, why would anyone want to make a kg of cemen at home? A recioe for a small amount would be far more useful . Second, not sure it does, I reckon there's a tad over 600 g of ingrediens in the recipe. I am however happy to have found out what cemen is, it's the bright red stiff paste that sometimes turns up in a mezze, but I picked up a tub in a Turkish store and the English ingredients were unhelpfully listed as "cemen".
I don't live that far from Oklava, may have to go!
Made me feel very hungry reading Oklava recipe book( by Selin Kiazim).
I love The Turkish version of liver, and still dream of it today. But, it was cubed, marinated overnight, then breaded and fried and seved with an onion salad. Not the thin slivers she calls Edirne liver, a place famous for liver, but this is not the way I remember it, but a lot can change in four decades, I'm going to try it though, it looks rather tasty.
I am impressed by the emphasis on fish, especially the red mullet I have eaten many times in Cyprus and along the southern coast of Turkey, a favourite.
I was very puzzled by the vegetable section. Pleased to see the white bean dish that is ubiquitous everywhere, but confounded that there was nothing on what here in the IK we call French beans, the long juicy green bean and tomato salad in olive oil, that like Coban Salata appeared on the table of just about everyone at every meal regardless of what meat or fish the main course comprised.
Good sections on spices and beverages.
Where this book excels in my opinion is Breakfast. Absolute perfection. Mouthwatering just looking at the illustrations, never mind taste memory.
The semolina custard borek and the chocolate delice are old favourites and am delighted they are included.
What is not included is the water pastry used to make one of the most delicious cheese pie/tray-bakes I have ever come across and found in just about every traditional style cafe and bakery/cake shop across Cyprus and Turkey. Thats a real shame. Neither is the meat free, plain macaroni cheese pie served in wedges or squares, usually cold that are so delicious and filling.
So, what is there all looks delish. Plenty of scope there for more books of authentic recipes we have to make ourselves in the vegetable section which should be massive, and especially the baking sections because our bakeries are still fairly limited and sponge cake and shortcrust still reigns supreme in our shops and cafes. Our extremely limited and often unimpressive selections in UK bakeries would get you laughed out of any self respecting bake/cake shop anywhere, in any neighbourhood, along the Med coast.
So, a very good selection of recipes and well worth having.
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Turkish cookery is fantastic, but not respected or known in the way that other world cuisines are.Read more