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Tag Archives | sumac

Sautéed Liver with Red Onion, Parsley and Sumac Salad; Ciger Tava

Turkish Style Sauteed Liver with Red Onion, Parsley and Sumaz Piyaz Salad; Ciger Tava or Arnavut Cigeri

Turkish Style Sauteed Liver with Red Onion, Parsley and Sumaz Piyaz Salad; Ciger Tava or Arnavut Cigeri

I was delighted to spot calf’s liver at my butcher the other day and decided to make our popular dish, Ciger Tava, Sautéed Liver, served with red onions, parsley and sumac piyaz salad. Also known as Arnavut Cigeri in Turkey, this is an easy and delicious way to enjoy liver flavored with red pepper flakes, accompanied by sumac flavored red onion & parsley salad. With a squeeze of lemon over, it is great to see even those who may pass liver normally, enjoy this way of preparing.

I used calf’s liver as it was available but try also lamb’s liver if you can get it; utterly delicious prepared this way and a hugely popular mezze at home. We enjoyed it as a main course, accompanied by these delicious Potato and Bulgur rolls with pomegranate molasses, Patatesli, Bulgurlu Kofte aside ( a popular and wholesome vegetarian mezze, which I also demonstrate at my Online Turkish Cookery Course).

Delicious and easy sauteed liver with red onion, parsley and sumac salad; Ciger Tava

Delicious and easy sauteed liver with red onion, parsley and sumac salad; Ciger Tava

Tip: The trick with cooking liver is that it needs to be stir fried quickly for a few minutes each side so it browns slightly and gets crispy outside but stays moist and soft inside. So please prepare your red onion, parsley and sumac salad first and then cook the liver so that you can serve straight after cooking over the salad, with a wedge of lemon aside.

Afiyet Olsun,

Ozlem

4.8 from 4 reviews
Sautéed Liver with Red Onion, Parsley and Sumac Salad; Ciger Tava
 
Sauteed liver Turkish style, Ciger Tava or Arnavut Cigeri, as it is also known, is an easy and delicious way to enjoy liver with red pepper flakes. Sumac flavored red onion & parsley piyaz salad accompanies the sauteed liver very well; serve with a wedge of lemon aside, for an extra zing, flavor and freshness.
Author:
Recipe type: Turkish mezzes with liver
Cuisine: Turkish Cuisine
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 500 gr/ 1 ¼ lb. fresh lamb’s or calf’s liver
  • 60 ml / 4 tbsp. light olive oil
  • 45 ml/ 3 tbsp. all-purpose (plain) flour
  • 10 ml/ 2 tsp. red pepper flakes or chili flakes
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • For the red onion, parsley and sumac piyaz salad:
  • 1 large red onion, cut in half lengthways and thinly sliced
  • Handful of flat leaf parsley, coarsely chopped
  • 10 ml/ 2 tsp. ground sumac
  • 1 lemon cut in wedges
Instructions
  1. Make the piyaz salad first. Slice the red onion and rub 1-2 tsp salt (preferable sea salt) into the onion slices; this will soften the onions and make them more palatable. Stir in the chopped parsley, ground sumac and black pepper, combine well. Spread the piyaz salad on a serving dish and set aside.
  2. Slice the liver into chunky bites or stripes (removing skin or ducts).
  3. Spread the flour on a tray and stir in the red pepper flakes, salt and ground black pepper, mix well. Toss the sliced liver into the flour mixture and make sure all liver pieces have a light coating of the flour mixture.
  4. Heat the olive oil is a wide, heavy pan. In the meantime, place absorbent kitchen paper towel on a clean tray.
  5. Toss in the liver into the hot pan with olive oil and sauté on high heat for about 2-3 minutes each side. The liver pieces will become crispy and have a light brown coating outside but still will be moist and soft inside. Once cooked, remove with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper towel.
  6. Serve immediately over the bed of red onion, parsley and sumac salad. We like to serve with a wedge of lemon and squeeze the lemon juicer over the liver while eating; it gives a lovely refreshing taste to the liver and complements the red onion salad well.
Notes
The trick with cooking liver is that it needs to be stir fried quickly for a few minutes each side so it browns slightly and gets crispy outside but stays moist and soft inside. So please prepare your red onion, parsley and sumac salad first and then cook the liver so that you can serve straight after cooking with a wedge of lemon.

 

My Online Turkish Cookery Course – special offer ends on April 6th!

A little reminder of my Online Turkish Cookery Course, as the special offer ends on April 6th (many thanks to those already watched, shared and your very kind, generous positive feedback). I aimed to provide a window into our warm Turkish culture through the delicious, healthy, wholesome Turkish food with my online Turkish cookery course, here is a lovely short video on my course, kindly prepared by Mer-ka-bah:

 

 

 

 

 The beauty of this online course is that it provides accessibility (you can watch the course in your home, while on the road or desktop), flexibility (anytime that suits you; as little as 10 minutes a day or the whole course, you can pause and come back as you wish) and yours to keep (once purchased, you own the course and can revisit whenever you’d like, with your user name and password).

Our delicious Turkish dishes I demonstrated at my online Turkish cookery course

From Spinach and feta filo pie to Stuffed eggplants and more; delicious Turkish dishes I demonstrate at my online Turkish cookery course

 My Online Turkish Cookery Course divided into different modules, covering Turkish culinary history, Importance of being connected with our roots, Seasonality, Use of Spices, Turkish serving traditions, as well as 4 classic Turkish recipes I demonstrate (Stuffed eggplants with ground meat & vegetables, Karniyarik; Spinach and feta filo pastry, Ispanakli Borek; Bulgur & Potato rolls with pomegranate molasses sauce, Patatesli, Bulgurlu Kofte and Turkish Coffee).

Here’s a free preview of what my online Turkish cookery course covers. And here is the link to my online Turkish cookery course. May it inspire you to learn more about healthy, delicious Turkish cuisine and be able to recreate the dishes in your kitchen, afiyet olsun!

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Manti, Turkish dumplings with ground meat, onion and spices

These delicious tiny treasures, Manti or Mantu, dumplings with spiced ground meat and onion, is one of the all time favorite  dishes in Turkey. In especially Anatolia, family members gather to prepare the dough and fill the tiny dough squares with the filling together; it is a bit of a labor of love, so it is great to get together for making it, and so worth the effort. The marriage of the melt-in-the-mouth dumplings with garlic yoghurt sauce and spice infused olive oil is simply irresistible. Tangy Sumac, red pepper flakes and dried mint infused in olive oil all add another layer of deliciousness and work greatly with garlic yoghurt as the sauce for manti.

Manti; delicious dumplings with gound meat filling, served with garlic yoghurt ans spices infused olive oil

Manti; delicious dumplings with ground meat filling, served with garlic yoghurt and spices infused olive oil

The word manti derives from mantu,  meaning dumplings. It is a shared culinary heritage that the nomadic Turkish tribes brought with them when they travelled from Central Asia towards Anatolia, today’s Turkey, during the 13th century.  According to Holly Chase, Turkic and Mongol horsemen on the move were supposed to have carried frozen or dried manti, which could be quickly boiled over a camp”; what a brilliant idea. These delicious dumplings are popular in most Turkic cuisines, as well as in Armenian, Caucasian, Central Asian, Afgan and Chinese Islamic cuisines.

These days you can get pre-made Manti in most supermarkets in Turkey and specialty & online stores abroad.

These days you can get pre-made Manti in most supermarkets in Turkey and specialty & online stores abroad.

These days you can easily find these delicious dumplings, manti in every supermarket in Turkey and Turkish specialty stores as well as Middle Eastern stores abroad, but there’s nothing quite like the homemade manti. In our family we make a double batch, bake the dumplings (which gives manti a nice bite) and freeze some of it for a delicious surprise later on, I highly recommend doing it. Traditionally, the filling consists of ground meat, onion and spices, though in Eastern Anatolia the crushed chickpeas with cumin and red pepper flakes are used as filling too and it is delicious vegetarian option.

Delicious, tiny treasures, Manti; Turkish dumplings with spiced ground meat filling.

Delicious, tiny treasures, Manti; Turkish dumplings with spiced ground meat filling.

I hope this scrumptious manti maybe a gift of good food, packed with history for your family and friends to share.

Fascinating Pergamum, Bergama - Turkey

Fascinating Pergamum, Bergama – Turkey

Cok Selamlar (My best wishes) and Afiyet Olsun,

Ozlem

Serves 4 people

Dough ingredients:

300gr/ 2 cups/ 10 ½ oz. all-purpose plain flour (plus a little extra for rolling)
1 egg, beaten
4 fl. oz. / ¼ cup water

30ml/2 tbsp. olive oil
5ml/1 tsp sea salt

For the filling:

225gr/8oz ground beef or lean ground lamb
1 onion, grated or very finely chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the garlic yoghurt:

500gr/2 ¼ cups thick and creamy plain yoghurt

1 -2 garlic cloves, crushed and finely chopped

Salt to taste

For the sauce:

15ml/1 tbsp. Turkish hot pepper paste, biber salcasi (give link) or tomato paste

60ml/4 tbsp. olive oil

10 ml/2 tsp. dried spearmint, kuru nane

5 ml/1 tsp. (or more) ground sumac (optional)

5 ml/ 1 tsp. (or more) Turkish red pepper flakes, chili flakes, pul biber

Preheat the oven to 180 C / 350 F

First make the dough. Sift the flour and salt into a wide bowl and make a well in the middle. Pour in the beaten egg and the water and using your hands, draw the flour into the liquid and mix to a dough. Pour in the olive oil and knead the dough for about 5-8 minutes, until it is smooth and elastic. Manti dough needs to be quite hard; cover the dough with a cling film or kitchen towel and leave to rest in a cold place or in the fridge for 30 minutes.

While the dough is resting, make the filling. Grate or finely chop the onion and combine with the ground meat. Season with salt and ground black pepper and mix well.

In a separate bowl, beat the yoghurt with the garlic and season with salt to your taste.

Spoon a little of the filling, rounded at a size of half a chickpea, into the middle of each square.

Spoon a little of the filling, rounded at a size of half a chickpea, into the middle of each square.

Cut the dough into 3 pieces. Working one piece of dough at a time (and cover the rest of the dough pieces with a damp towel in the meantime so they don’t dry out), roll the dough as thinly as you can into a sheet, on a lightly floured surface. Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into small squares (roughly 2.5cm/1in). Spoon a little of the filling, rounded at a size of half a chickpea, into the middle of each square.

 

Pinch the opposite corners to form a little a little pouch and press the seams together to seal firmly.

Bake uncovered for 10 minutes, until the manti, dumplings start to get light golden.

Bake uncovered for 10 minutes, until the manti, dumplings start to get light golden.

Repeat with the rest of the dough and place the stuffed dumplings in a greased oven proof dish, stacking them next to one another. Bake uncovered for 10 minutes, until the manti, dumplings start to get light golden. Take them out of the oven and let the manti cool. You can freeze some of this baked manti in a sealed bag for up to 3 weeks.

Pour the hot water and pinch of salt to a large pan and bring to the boil. Place the baked dumplings gently to the boiling water and simmer for about 8- 10 minutes, until they are cooked. Once cooked, drain the water and return the manti to the pan. Drizzle a little oil over them so that they don’t stick together.

While manti is cooking, prepare your sauce. Heat the oil in a wide pan and add the hot pepper paste, biber salcasi or the tomato paste. Stir in the red pepper flakes, dried mint and sumac, combine well and simmer for 1-2 minutes.

Manti; delicious Turkish dumplings with spiced ground meat, served with garlic yoghurt and spices infused olive oil.

Manti; delicious Turkish dumplings with spiced ground meat, served with garlic yoghurt and spices infused olive oil.

Arrange manti on a warm serving dish and spoon the garlic yogurt over them. Then drizzle spices infused olive oil and tomato/red pepper paste sauce over the garlic yoghurt. You can decorate with extra red pepper flakes, dried mint and sumac and serve immediately.

Afiyet olsun; May you be happy and healthy with this delicious food you eat;

Ozlem

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From Menemen to Izmir Kofte; delicious and easy Turkish meals when you are on the move

We have just moved in to our new home; very exciting yet also busy with packing and settling in. I gathered a few of my favorite recipes here that can be easily prepared, yet delicious and wholesome – I know I will be turning to them and knowing I have good food ready to enjoy & serve will give me peace of mind, at the end of a busy day. These dishes can also be prepared ahead of time or can be cooked all in one pot. I hope these also may inspire you for wholesome and easy meals; look forward to sharing new recipes from our new home soon!

Turkish scrambled egg with tomatoes, peppers, oninons and feta cheese, Menemen

Menemen; Turkish scrambled egg with tomatoes, peppers, onions and feta cheese.

Menemen; Turkish scrambled egg with tomatoes, peppers, onions and feta cheese.

What do you cook when you are loaded with boxes and busy unpacking? Well, this delicious scrambled egg and vegetables is packed with flavour, it is nutritious and gets ready in minutes. Menemen is one of my homeland’s favorite brunch item, and a great street food. There are many versions of it – garlic, onion, any choice of cheese, spinach would go well too. Served with nice crusty bread and a little garlic yoghurt by the side, this dish can make a wonderful light supper or a substantial lunch option.

Casserole of meatballs, peppers, onions and potato; Izmir Kofte

Izmir Kofte; Casserole of meatballs, onions, peppers and potato

Izmir Kofte; Casserole of meatballs, onions, peppers and potato

How about this melt-in-the mouth Izmir Kofte; Casserole of meatballs, peppers, onions and potato? This is a popular meatball and vegetable casserole (not only with the children but with the adults too!) that can either be cooked on the stove top or baked in the oven. It makes a complete and hearty main course served with plain white rice or a slice of crusty bread. Delicious, easy meal; you can add as much red pepper flakes as you would like for a spicier flavor.

 Zucchini fritters with feta, dill and green onions –  Mucver

Zucchini fritters with feta, spring onions and dill; Mucver; delicious

Zucchini fritters with feta, spring onions and dill; Mucver; delicious

Zucchini, kabak in Turkish, are very versatile, used in many dishes and their flowers are perfect for stuffing. This surprisingly easy and  wonderful vegetarian fritters, Mucver, are fantastic accompanied by garlic infused yoghurt or a leafy salad and crusty bread. You can enjoy them as a meze/appetizer for supper or light lunch dish. The bite size versions would be a great party / finger food too. They are also wonderful served next day as a cold snack. They are easy to make and delightful. Here is my Mucver recipe, if you’d like to give it a go.

Bulgur wheat pilaf with vegetables; Sebzeli Bulgur Pilavi

Bulgur pilaf with onions, peppers and tomatoes, Sebzeli Bulgur Pilavi

Bulgur pilaf with onions, peppers and tomatoes, Sebzeli Bulgur Pilavi

Often confused with cracked wheat, bulgur wheat is a grain made from cooked whole wheat berries, which have had the bran removed, and is then dried in the sun and crushed. As it has already been cooked, it requires little cooking to reconstitute itself. It is available coarsely and finely ground. For pilaf, the coarser type is used, to create a nutty and delicious dish, which is a meal in itself and served with yoghurt. Bulgur has been a major staple in many rural areas in Turkey; during the Ottoman Period, the rice was a very precious commodity that only the rich could afford. This made the bulgur a very popular option and healthy one too. It is reach in fiber and provides good source of protein.  I love this delicious and wholesome bulgur pilaf with vegetables; you get a complete, satisfying meal in no time. You can serve Cacik dip, yoghurt with cucumbers and dried mint as a side for a refreshing accompaniment.

Eggplants, green lentils and vegetables cooked in Olive Oil; Mercimekli Mualla

Aubergine with green lentils, aubergine onions and peppers; Mercimekli Mualla- such a delicious treat

Aubergine with green lentils, aubergine onions and peppers; Mercimekli Mualla- such a delicious treat

We have a whole section in Turkish cuisine called “Vegetables cooked in Olive Oil”, Zeytinyaglilar, where we cook vegetables in olive oil and serve them either cold or at room temperature. Once cooked, it is important for the dish to cool down in its pan and rest, allowing all the flavors to blend. Usually served with a wedge of lemon, this style of cooking is very healthy, tasty and refreshing. This traditional recipe, Patlicanli Mercimekli Mualla, is from Antakya, Southern part of Turkey, where my roots are from. The amazing flavors of green lentils, olive oil, eggplant and dried mint blend so well and take me back to Antakya immediately. Again, all-in-one-pot, delicious vegetarian meal you can prepare ahead of time.

Turkish beans salad with vegetables, olives, boiled egg in sumac dressing; Fasulye Piyazi

Bean salad with onions, tomatoes, olives and boiled eggs - Fasulye piyazl

Bean salad with onions, tomatoes, olives and boiled eggs – Fasulye piyazl

What do you cook when you have limited time? Well, this bean and vegetable salad, fasulye piyazi, can be ready in a flash, it is very delicious and healthy. At home, traditionally we serve fasulye piyazi with grilled meatballs, koftes. There are traditional restaurants, lokantas, at home that solely serve Turkish style meatballs, fasulye piyaz and pickled cucumber and peppers. This salad is also a great alternative for lunch, served with some nice crusty bread or in can be a part of a meze spread. I would happily have this salad with some nice bread aside for a light supper.

Baked dried apricots with walnuts – Cevizli kayisi tatlisi

Baked dried apricots with walnuts; delicious, easy and packed with goodness.

Baked dried apricots with walnuts; delicious, easy and packed with goodness.

One of Turkey’s most prolific fruits is the apricot. Because of their abundance, some of the yearly harvest is allowed to dry in the hot summer sun in order to be enjoyed all year round. Malatya, a city in southeast Turkey, is particularly famous for excellent dried apricots which are exported throughout the world. Apricots are great snacks; they are packed with fiber, antioxidants and their naturally rich, wonderful flavor is icing on the cake. This delicious & easy baked dried apricots with walnuts dessert is great for sharing with friends and family or just indulging yourself.

Delicious, frothy Turkish Coffee – Turk Kahvesi; More than a Drink

Turkish Coffee, Turk Kahvesi; More than a Drink

Turkish Coffee, Turk Kahvesi; More than a Drink

For me, nothing more relaxing than taking a break with a  nice cup of Turkish coffee. Turkish coffee, Turk kahvesi is one of the most popular traditional drinks at home in Turkey and I love the whole ritual, the experience of it. In Turkish, we have a saying “Bir fincan kahvenin kirk yil hatiri vardir” which means “The memory of a good cup of Turkish coffee lasts 40 years”. Turkish coffee is a drink of friendship; you are offered this traditional, aromatic drink wherever you go in Turkey; when visiting friends and family, in the shops, while waiting in the bank, in hairdressers.. We take time to pause and enjoy this special drink with a friend or family or sometimes simply reflect with every precious sip. A glass of water and Turkish Delights, Lokum by the side complete the Turkish coffee ritual. And I always look forward to putting the feet up and enjoy a sip of Turkish coffee at then end of a busy day.

Afiyet Olsun!

Ozlem

 

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