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Home Made Turkish Delight – Lokum

Lokum ph2,Turkish Delight with OTT

Home made, fragrant Turkish Delights; easier than you think!

Have you ever tried Turkish Delight? These delicately flavored, scrumptious sweets are one ofTurkey’s hallmarks. They can be plain, sade, delicately flavored with fragrant rose water or dried fruits, nuts and desiccated coconut can be incorporated into the luscious mouthfuls of fragrant jelly.

Scrumptious Turkish Delights with nuts in Turkey; they are a real treat

My children love Turkish Delight, and living abroad, I can’t always get those wonderful delights from home. Making Turkish Delight, having them properly set can be a bit of a challenge, but this new recipe we tried at my Turkish cooking class last weekend came out so well, we were all so pleased! And yes, you can now make Turkish Delight in your home! I would allow for the fragrant jelly to set at least overnight (and more if you can). They also make wonderful gifts; to pack as presents, sprinkle a little corn flour mixture into a bag to stop sweets sticking.

Turkish Delight with rose water, and the back, with chocolate – you get all sorts of flavours these days!

Now, a bit of history on Turkish Delight. Prior to the arrival of refined sugar in the late 18th century, the Ottomans made a crude version of Turkish Delight using honey or pekmez, a concentrated grape syrup and wheat flour. Haci Bekir, a confectioner of the time, became famous due to his ingenious use of white sugar and corn starch and was summoned to Topkapi Palace to pioneer the development of what is today one of Turkey’s hallmarks. Special recipes for variations of Turkish Delight can be found in all regions ofTurkey. Sakiz (mastic gum) another ingredient revered by the Sultans, can be used to create a chewier version and is a must if you are preparing rolled up versions of lokum. This recipe is for plain (sade) lokum, however, you may wish to add shelled and chopped nuts of your choice – hazelnuts, pistachio nuts or walnuts work extremely well.

Prep time: 15 minutes (plus setting overnight) Cooking time: about 25 minutes

Makes about 64 small squares

25gr/1oz icing sugar

100gr/3 1/2 oz corn flour

700gr/1 1/2lb caster sugar

Juice of 1 lemon

3 tbsp powdered gelatine (* see for a vegetarian gel option)

Red or pink coloring – optional

2 tbsp rose water

Gold edible glitter – optional

* If you prefer to use vegetarian gelatine, Dr Oetker has a vegetarian gel too, here is the link;
Vege-Gel is a vegetarian alternative to gelatine and not a substitute. Therefore, it has to be used in a slightly different way to gelatine and it may be necessary to adapt your recipe.

Sprinkle a little cornflour and icing sugar mixture over the base and sides of the bowl

Line a 20.5 (8in) square baking tin with a cling film. Sift icing sugar and 25g (1oz) of the corn flour into a small bowl. Sprinkle a little over the base and sides of the tin. Set bowl aside.

Put caster sugar, lemon juice and water into large pan, heat gently until dissolved

Put caster sugar, lemon juice and 400ml (14fl oz) water into large pan. Heat gently until dissolved – do not boil. In a small bowl, mix the remaining corn flour with 100ml (3 1/2 fl oz) cold water, and then stir into sugar syrup. Sprinkle gelatine over liquid and stir with balloon whisk to break up lumps. Bring to boil, then simmer over medium heat for 20 minutes, whisking often. The mixture should thicken and turn pale yellow.

 

Gelatine helps set the Turkish Delight and rose water adds a delicately perfumed flavor

Remove from heat and whisk in a little food coloring to turn mixture into light pink (optional). Set aside for 5 min. Stir in rose water and pour into tin. Leave to set in a cool place overnight.

Leave to set Turkish Delight in a cool place overnight

Dust a board with some reserved corn flour mixture, and then invert Turkish Delight on to it. Remove tin; peel off clingfilm. Cut into cubes, and then roll each gently in corn flour mixture to coat.

Dusting a board with the corn flour and icing sugar mixture really helps for the jelly not to stick

Sprinkle over a little glitter, if using. Store in an airtight container with remaining corn flour mixture at cool room temperature for up to 1 month. To pack as gifts, sprinkle a little corn flour mixture into a bag to stop sweets sticking.

Home made Turkish Delights; you will be pleased with the outcome

Turkish Delight goes so well with Turkish Coffee, and here is the recipe, of you would like to try.

Turkish Cofffee – Turk Kahvesi- goes so well with Turkish Delight

I love all these copper pots and saucers to make and serve sweets and Turkish Coffee; this stall has been at the Ortakoy Market in Istanbul

And here are few photos from our Turkish cooking class; you can also see more photos, recipes and what we have been up to at Ozlem’s Turkish Table Facebook page.

It was a joy to share Turkish cuisine and traditions at the cooking class

 

Turkish Delights have been a big hit at our cooking class

Wishing you all a delicious week ahead, Afiyet Olsun!

Ozlem

 

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69 Responses to Home Made Turkish Delight – Lokum

  1. Peter June 18, 2012 at 11:30 am #

    I’ve been wanting to making Loukoumia for ages and this post might just be the one to nudge me…thank you Ozlem!

    • Ozlem June 18, 2012 at 8:15 pm #

      Kalimeras Peter 😉
      I love the word Loukoumia, glad the recipe inspired, look forward to checking out your version:)

  2. Mary June 18, 2012 at 11:38 am #

    What a fantastic post! really lovely. I adore Turkish Delight – it really is a treat – great to have a recipe for it – thanks!
    Mary x

    • Ozlem June 18, 2012 at 8:14 pm #

      You are welcome Mary, this recipe is a keeper, so glad they turned up well 🙂

  3. subhie June 18, 2012 at 11:57 am #

    wow ..yummy,..thx for d recipe…i have ate while my trip to turkey..bt no idea how is done..now i know.

    • Ozlem June 18, 2012 at 8:13 pm #

      You are very welcome Subhie!

  4. TasteofBeirut June 18, 2012 at 12:59 pm #

    Ozlem, I can’t think of anything more fun to make than these little beauties! As you probably know, they are also very popular in Lebanon (no doubt brought in when the Ottomans reigned in these parts); there is also a Lebanese dessert which is very similar with rose water and walnuts, but the starch used is wheat based. Yours look fabulous!

    • Ozlem June 18, 2012 at 8:12 pm #

      Thank you Joumana, we do share a lot of culinary heritage and that’s wonderful. Your version with wheat based starch sounds wonderful, is there any chance you can share the recipe? So glad you liked these treats!

  5. CuisinedeProvence June 18, 2012 at 3:04 pm #

    I love Turkish Delight – when last in Turkey we found some with figs in it – yum! I admire you Özlem that you can make it yourself – one more thing you will have to teach me when I come to London.

    • Ozlem June 18, 2012 at 8:11 pm #

      Dear Barbara, I bet the Turkish Delights you had with figs must have been amazing, what a combo. I so look forward to lots of cooking together when you come to England 😉

  6. Susan June 18, 2012 at 4:55 pm #

    Just wonderful, Ozlem! I had no idea you could make these at home. And, as always, I love your photos from Istanbul.

    • Ozlem June 18, 2012 at 8:09 pm #

      Thanks Susan, I was also pleasantly surprised how well they turned out!

  7. Reinventing nadine June 19, 2012 at 3:48 am #

    Ozlem…again another food item that we have in common.in lebanon we serve the rose water lokum sandwiched between two cookies during Ashoura.

    • Ozlem June 19, 2012 at 1:06 pm #

      What a lovely idea Nadine, we also have Asure, another common traditions, so wonderful to see.

  8. Joy (My Turkish Joys) June 19, 2012 at 6:31 am #

    Thanks for sharing your lokum recipe! I’ve been wanting to make for awhile, but have been dreading the amount of work. 🙂 Do you think your ratios would work for my ingredients here in Turkey? The reason I ask is that I have had issues with the icing sugar here bc it’s more grainy than what I was used to in the US.

    • Ozlem June 19, 2012 at 1:05 pm #

      Hi Joy, my pleasure. I wonder if you use powdered sugar in Turkey for better results? Or would it work if you grind them finely with food processor? Thats what I do to turn coarse bulgur to fine bulgur, hope it works. let me know if i can help more, good luck!;)

  9. Diane Balch June 19, 2012 at 12:34 pm #

    I love Turkish Delights they always make me think of the Narnia books and being in Turkey.

    • Ozlem June 19, 2012 at 1:03 pm #

      Thanks Diane, they are fairly easy to make too, glad you enjoy them.

  10. Jen @ Savory Simple June 19, 2012 at 12:46 pm #

    I have never tried these! They’re definitely on my list now.

    • Ozlem June 19, 2012 at 1:02 pm #

      Thanks Jen, glad you will have a go at them!

  11. Peri's Spice Ladle June 20, 2012 at 4:27 am #

    These look delicious, Ozlem! And the pictures of the Turkish markets always remind me of India…so colorful and rich with culture:) and the coffee looks so inviting…

    • Ozlem June 20, 2012 at 9:27 am #

      Thank you Peri, I love those colorful markets too. We have to have Turkish coffee together, I am adding on the list 🙂

  12. Phil in the Kitchen June 20, 2012 at 9:48 am #

    I love Turkish Delight but the quality is so variable when I buy it. I’ve never thought of making my own – I always thought it would be just too difficult and involve some kind of alchemy. I’ve no excuse now – it looks very inviting.

    • Ozlem June 20, 2012 at 10:16 am #

      Thanks Phil, I had the same thoughts before I had a go to this recipe, it is by far as close as I can get to the real thing! Home made version is still a little on the softer side, though the texture and taste has been really satisfying for me. I hope yours turn out well. Just to let you know, the Turkish Market in Cheam also carries out wonderful Turkish delights from home. Good luck!:)

  13. Elena June 20, 2012 at 11:35 am #

    Selam Ozlem,
    iam slovak girl, living in Slovakia with my turkish boyfriend. Since we are together, iam trying to prepare some of turkish food to make my man little bit happy here :), and i have to say, your web is also one of my daily inspiration. Would like to thank for great recipes, lovely pics and stories 🙂
    Thanks for sharing lokum as well, definitely i will try it!
    Elena
    ps. if u are little interesting in how slovak girl cooks turkish food, i invite u to my blog : http://nazarboncukagaci.blogspot.sk/
    🙂

    • Ozlem June 20, 2012 at 12:49 pm #

      Merhaba Elena,
      So wonderful to get your comment, thank you so much 🙂 I am glad the blog is helping out with inspirations, you are very welcome. I know Turkish man would appreciate food from home so well done you 🙂 look forward to checking your blog!

  14. Turkey's For Life June 21, 2012 at 5:29 am #

    Wow, that’s great that you’ve worked out a way to make your own lokum. It certainly looks the part. Got to say, I love your photo of Ortaköy market in Istanbul, too! 🙂
    Julia

    • Ozlem June 21, 2012 at 11:06 am #

      Thanks Julia, it looked and tasted very similar to the real thing, children loved it so I take it as a success 🙂 I love Ortakoy too, it is beautiful anytime of the year.

  15. Laura (Tutti Dolci) June 25, 2012 at 5:00 am #

    I’ve never tried Turkish Delight but these look delicious! Turkish Delight reminds me of the book “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe” – one of the characters ate a whole box in a sitting!

    • Ozlem June 25, 2012 at 9:15 am #

      Hi Laura, I hope you can have a go sometime, they are lovely treats! My kids can be one of the characters in that book and (if allowed), they would gallup a whole box! many thanks for stopping by.

  16. nat June 27, 2012 at 5:47 pm #

    Hello nice to have this recipe! I was just wondering, what will turkish women add instead of gelatine (because its made from pork)?
    and I would like to leave a comment for NazarBoncuk if you dont mind bcos there is no option for anonymous accounts like mine:
    Wow You really cook nice turkish meals, Im from Poland and found your site, your eriste really inspired me, Natalie

    • Ozlem June 28, 2012 at 12:19 pm #

      Hello Natalie, many thanks for your comment. I have seen corn starch being used in the making of Turkish Delight too, so perhaps it may help? really glad the blog has given inspiration : )

  17. hfriday August 3, 2012 at 2:47 pm #

    I just came back from an amazing vacation in Istanbul! I absolutely loved everything about Turkey, especially the cuisine!

    We bought lokum from Hafiz Mustafa made out of honey instead of sugar and got a variety of flavors, including my favorite – pomegranate and pistachio nuts. I was hoping the big box I bought would last a few weeks but I don’t think it will last the weekend!

    My question – how can (or can we) adjust your recipe to use honey instead of sugar? And any ideas on how to make the pomegranate flavor?

    Thanks!

    • Ozlem August 4, 2012 at 2:53 pm #

      Hellos from Istanbul, thanks for the comment -delighted to hear you enjoyed your time in Istanbul! Honey has more intense and sweet taste so I would use less honey – perhaps 1/3 less- . I haven’t experimented with the pomegranate flavor – you will need the pomegranate molasses for it. Again, pomegranate molasses has a strong, concentrated flavor, so I would go easy on it, perhaps a few teaspoonsfuls to start with, taste and see if you’d like to add more to it.
      When you make Turkish Delight, do make sure to rest the mixture at least overnight.
      Hope all these helps – let us know how it turns out:)

  18. Alida October 3, 2012 at 5:00 pm #

    I do want to make my own! I love Turkish delight and would love to try making them. It seems quite straightforward. Thank you for this tip!

    • Ozlem October 3, 2012 at 9:25 pm #

      You are welcome Alida, it really is fun to make Turkish Delight and home made version tastes much better. Try to let is rest overnight before cutting, that helps the Turkish Delight to set. Hope you enjoy it!:)

  19. Linda October 18, 2012 at 4:29 am #

    Hi Ozlem, Thank you so much for this recipe! It was a breeze to follow and the turkish delights were a success. My mother has tried various recipes and had no luck in the past, each time the final product was too wet and never set adequately, so she was really pleased when we followed your recipe and it worked! 🙂 We will be making another batch today and aim to make them a bit more chewier as the first batch were a little soft. Do you have any recommendations on how we can achieve a firmer consistency? My mother suggested to let it simmer for a little longer and maybe place it in the fridge to set, what do you think?
    Any advice will be much appreciated, thank you.

    • Ozlem October 19, 2012 at 9:04 am #

      Dear Linda, I am so glad to hear your Turkish Delight was a success, wonderful news! This recipe by far the most successful for me too; it is a challenge to achieve a firmer consistency with home made ones, as we don’t use any other additives. I realised the Turkish Delights set firmer the next day or two, so that’s to bear in mind. If you want them to be chewier, you may want to use a little mastic gum? It certainly helps with that, especially if you like the taste too. Another idea I thought to maybe use a little more gelatin?

      Putting the delights in fridge maybe a little tricky as it may cause the sugar to crystalise, but I hope above suggestions would help. Thank you so much for taking the time to write and I look forward to your next feedback! My best wishes to you and your mother,
      Ozlem

  20. Allison (Spontaneous Tomato) February 27, 2013 at 5:37 pm #

    Wow, you make it look so easy! I’ll bookmark this one for sure, since I’d love to try making my own Turkish Delight someday! : )

    • Ozlem Warren February 27, 2013 at 7:54 pm #

      Thanks Alison, it is easier than you think – hope you can give it a go!

  21. zerrin March 22, 2013 at 7:28 pm #

    Thank you so much for sharing it here! It was always in my mind to try it one day, but I was just afraid of failure! You inspired me to try it soon! These look absolutely perfect! I enjoyed the pictures of your cooking class too!

    • Ozlem Warren March 23, 2013 at 5:29 pm #

      Merhaba Zeynep, you are very welcome 🙂 We all sometimes need a little encouragement, glad this one did it for you : ) I think yours will be yummy, greatly look forward to your creations! x ozlem

  22. Rosamond November 30, 2013 at 9:24 am #

    As a Muslim i refrain from eating anything that is not Halal so i was wondering if the Dr Oetker had a vegetarien option. What does Turkey use for their gelatine ? I have been visiting Turkey for 15 years and always assume the food is Halal.

    • Ozlem Warren November 30, 2013 at 6:27 pm #

      Merhaba Rosamond,

      Thank you for stopping by at my blog and your comment. You are right, halal food is an important factor in Turkey, and Turkish delight is made using cream of tartar and corn starch, the below recipe may be of interest to you for Turkish delight: http://mideastfood.about.com/od/dessertssweetspastries/r/turkishdelight.htm

      Dr Oetker has a vegetarian gel too, here is the link http://www.oetker.co.uk/oetker_uk/html/default/debi-7nacm3.en.html
      Vege-Gel is a vegetarian alternative to gelatine and not a substitute. Therefore, it has to be used in a slightly different way to gelatine and it may be necessary to adapt your recipe.
      Hope it helps, Selamlar

      • Rosamond November 30, 2013 at 7:33 pm #

        Çok naziksiniz, I normally use agar agar but not really happy with the aftertaste. I will try your suggestion.
        Çok yaşa

        • Ozlem Warren December 1, 2013 at 3:25 pm #

          Rica ederim, would be delighted if any suggestions help : ) Cok selamlar, Ozlem

  23. Emmaline June 4, 2014 at 6:48 pm #

    Hey,
    My lokum is not setting. I is still at the consistency of hardly set jello after I let it sit in the frigde overnight. I recently learned I did not coco kit long enough. Do you thick I could heat it up again and cook it further. It did not set at all so it would just turn into liquid again. Any tips to know when it’s ready?

    • Ozlem Warren June 4, 2014 at 9:13 pm #

      Hi Emmaline, I am not sure reheating will help here.Sometimes the humidity in the air, the type of cornstarch, hardness of water all effect. I would let it sit at least another night andturn out the turkish delight onto a surface dusted in icing sugar, so it won’t stick to each other.Also, storing the turkish delight in a container lined with greaseproof paper and leaving it sat in the icing sugar mix used for dusting should help to settle. This home made version is never as set or thick as commercial ones but at the end, if followed the recipe, should settle well enough to cut. You may also roll in small chunks if it helps. My best wishes, let me know if I can help further.

  24. Annette November 28, 2014 at 2:06 pm #

    Love this recipe but I would like to use potatoe starch, is it possible? Also would like to make it with honey only, any suggestions ? We are gf also corn free family and with Christmas around the corner I would like to find new family traditions. I truly look forward to this new challenge and making Turkish delight , cheers!

    • Ozlem Warren November 28, 2014 at 2:46 pm #

      Hi Anette, I haven’t experimented with potato starch for Turkish delight, but why not? It’s a great binding agent and it may well work here, so as honey. I checked online for you and came up with this, hope it helps. Making your own Turkish delight is a wonderful, satisfying experience, especially for the holidays, hope you enjoy it. I would appreciate if you can let me know how you get on, exciting times – all the best! https://spoonacular.com/turkish-delight-307986

  25. julie December 16, 2014 at 5:11 pm #

    I am looking forward to try your recipe. Thank you. You mention that mastic is used for a chewier version. Can you please give the amount and how to use it, ie: how many oz of mastic to use? and when do I put in the mastic, before or after the mixed had finish boiling?

    Thank you so much!

    • Ozlem Warren December 16, 2014 at 9:53 pm #

      Merhaba Julie, lovely, hope you enjoy making your own Turkish Delight. Mastic gum has a strong flavor and you don’t need much of it – 1 tsp should be enough; I would dissolve it with the sugar, all the best!

  26. Catalina May 13, 2015 at 10:12 am #

    Hi! After several years of wanting to taste these promising sweets, I finally managed to get a bottle of rose water (it’s not a common ingredient in South America). Of course, the next step was using it in a recipe, and that’s when I found yours!
    I followed all the instructions, and am I glad I’ve tried it! They taste incredibly good! I left them over night, as you suggested, and the texture came just right.
    Thanks a lot for sharing! Now I’ll be able to share one of the wonders of Turkish cuisine with my colleagues at work. I bet no one has tasted them before.
    Greetings from Colombia 😉

    • Ozlem Warren May 13, 2015 at 11:26 am #

      Merhaba Catalina, thank you so much for your kind note, I really am delighted to hear you enjoyed making Turkish Delight and they turned up well for you, fantastic! Hope you and your colleagues enjoy at work -indeed one of the special wonders of Turkey! Greetings and best wishes to you and all in Colombia!: ) Ozlem

  27. sieda May 14, 2015 at 12:03 am #

    Tek kelimeyle muhtesem, mutlaka denemek isterim ama ingilizcem malesef ince detaylar icin yeterli degil, türkce olarak tarifi almam mümkünmü,simdiden tesekkürler

    • Ozlem Warren May 14, 2015 at 1:20 pm #

      Merhabalar sevgili Sieda, cok tesekkurler mesajina. Lokum tarifinin Turkcesini henuz hazirlamadim, bir firsatim oldugunda seve seve. Senin de guzel tariflerini ilgiyle takip ediyorum, ellerine saglik : ) Selamlar, Ozlem

  28. Lisa Goodman December 21, 2015 at 9:01 am #

    Hi, three tablespoons of gelatine seems rather a lot as the sachets of gelatine don’t even contain 1 tablespoon. Could you please confirm this is correct, if so I will go out and but some more gelatine. I would like to make some of this for Christmas when my family visit.
    Thank you.

    • Ozlem Warren December 21, 2015 at 11:40 am #

      Hi Lisa, you do need a good amount of gelatine for the Turkish Delight to be able to set properly and the amount specified in the recipe is correct. I made mine with this recipe, it sets well – though not as much as the commercially made ones as there is not preservative involved. It makes a wonderful, fragrant gift, hope you enjoy them. My best wishes, Ozlem

  29. LuLu September 5, 2016 at 9:44 pm #

    As a child, my Father would bring me a brown sausage roll of Turkish candy, filled with walnuts in the center. The gel had a slightly denser consistency than Lokkum, more chewy, and tasted a little like fig. It was not coated with sugar and had a smooth dry feel on the outside. He called it “Tuzhuck” which I believe means “sausage”. Please help me find this product or tell me how to make it. Thank you!
    LuLu

    • Ozlem Warren September 6, 2016 at 10:13 am #

      Merhaba Lulu, thank you for your note; I know what you mean, we call it Tatli Sucuk – Sweet Turkish sausage and it is made with walnuts, covered with grape molasses; I love its tangy, natural sweet flavor and chewy texture. I haven’t had a chance to make this yet, will gladly post here once I had a go. I hope you may be able to find it at Middle Eastern stores, afiyet olsun! Ozlem

  30. Ozlem July 6, 2012 at 11:47 am #

    Thanks for the mention Natalie !:)

  31. Ozlem July 28, 2012 at 1:17 pm #

    Good idea, thanks Nadine – did the gelatine from cows work well?

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