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Tag Archives | Turkish desserts

Sutlu Nuriye; Lighter Baklava with Hazelnuts in Milky Syrup

Sutlu Nuriye; lighter baklava with hazelnuts in milky syrup

Sutlu Nuriye; lighter baklava with hazelnuts in milky syrup

Sutlu Nuriye is a delicious Turkish dessert; similar to baklava but lighter with its milk based syrup. Crushed hazelnuts are used in the filling here and works wonderfully with the milky syrup, which gives Sutlu Nuriye a whitish look. Sutlu Nuriye is lighter, creamer than baklava and really easy to make at home, using filo pastry sheets. They have been a huge hit with the children, as well as adults in our home, great for entertaining.

Pour in the luke warm milky syrup over cooled cooked filo pastry and let the pastry to soak the milky syrup for 35- 40 minutes.

Pour in the luke warm milky syrup over cooled cooked filo pastry and let the pastry to soak the milky syrup for 35- 40 minutes.

Sutlu Nuriye believed to be created due to the supply shortage in 1980s. Rather than the expensive pistachios, a baklava producer used hazelnuts and flavored with milk for lighter syrup. The result has been today’s popular Sutlu Nuriye, a delicious, lighter version of the regular baklava.

Light, melt-in-the mouth Sutlu Nuriye, a variation of baklava in milky syrup.

Light, melt-in-the mouth Sutlu Nuriye, a variation of baklava in milky syrup.

You can prepare Sutlu Nuriye a day ahead of time and keep it in a cool place; always serve at room temperature. I hope you enjoy this soft, light, melt-in-the mouth Sutlu Nuriye, a variation of baklava in milky syrup. Turkish coffee or Turkish tea, cay aside complements Sutlu Nuriye very well.

My very best wishes to you all for the festive season. Many thanks for your company, recreating my Turkish recipes at your homes, your kind share and comments, I greatly appreciate it. It’s been a pleasure enjoying Turkish cuisine with you all and I look forward to sharing many more recipes in the New Year. I wish you all a happy, healthy new year in good company and delicious food.

Ozlem1

Afiyet Olsun,

Ozlem

5.0 from 1 reviews
Sutlu Nuriye; Lighter Baklava with Hazelnuts in Milky Syrup
 
Sutlu Nuriye is a delicious Turkish dessert; similar to baklava but lighter with its milk based syrup. Crushed hazelnuts are used in the filling here and works wonderfully with the milky syrup, which gives Sutlu Nuriye a whitish look. Sutlu Nuriye is lighter, creamer than baklava and really easy to make at home, using filo pastry sheets. Hope you enjoy it, Afiyet Olsun!
Author:
Recipe type: Turkish Desserts
Cuisine: Turkish Cuisine
Serves: 30 pieces
Ingredients
  • 270 gr x 2 packs of filo pastry sheets (12 filo sheets in total; each sheet 480 mm x 255 mm each)
  • 200 gr/4 oz. /a little less than 1 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 340 gr/ 12 oz. chopped/crushed hazelnuts
  • For the syrup:
  • 16 fl. oz. / 2 cups water
  • 12 fl oz. / 1 ½ cup whole milk
  • 270 gr/ 1⅓ cup sugar
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 180 C/ 350 F
  2. Take out the fresh filo pastry sheets from the fridge and bring to room temperature 20 minutes prior using. To thaw frozen filo sheets, it is best to place them in the fridge the night before or bring it to room temperature 2 hours before using.
  3. Grease the baking dish with the melted butter.
  4. Place two filo pastry sheets to the baking dish (trim the sheets at the edges if necessary to fit into your baking dish) and brush with the melted butter.
  5. Place 2 more filo pastry sheets and brush with the melted butter. Place another two sheets over them and brush with melted butter.
  6. Crush the hazelnuts in a food processor, carefully pulsing a just few times or chop by hand (take care for the hazelnuts not go too small pieces or fine).
  7. Spread the chopped hazelnuts evenly on the 6th sheet of buttered filo pastry.
  8. Lay two more sheets of filo pastry and brush with melted butter. Repeat this 2 more times, buttering every two sheets, until you reach 12th sheet.
  9. Brush the 12th sheet of filo pastry with butter and ease the sheets into the corners and trim the edges if necessary.
  10. Then using a sharp knife, cut right through all the layers to form small square pieces. It should make about 30 pieces in total.
  11. Bake the pastry in the preheated oven (180 C/ 350 F) for 25 minutes, until golden at top.
  12. While the pastry is baking, prepare your syrup.
  13. Put the sugar into a heavy pan, pour in water and bring to the boil, stirring all the time. Once the sugar is dissolved, lower the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
  14. Pour in the milk to the pan, give a good stir to the syrup and turn the heat off. Leave the pan aside to cool down; the syrup needs to be luke warm to pour over cooked filo pastry.
  15. Once the filo pastry is cooked and golden at top, take out of the oven and leave it aside to cool down for 15 minutes.
  16. Slowly pour in the luke warm milky syrup over cooled cooked filo pastry and let the pastry to soak the milky syrup for 35- 40 minutes.
  17. Once milky syrup is absorbed by the pastry, take out the Sutlu Nuriye squares and serve at room temperature.
  18. You can prepare Sutlu Nuriye a day ahead of time and keep in a cool place, covered.
 

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Homemade Cezerye; Caramalised Carrot Paste Delight with Nuts

Cezerye; Caramalised carrot paste with nuts

Cezerye; Caramalised carrot paste with nuts

Have you ever tried the delicious Cezerye dessert? A specialty from Mersin region at southern Turkey, Cezerye is a delicious confectionery made of carrots, nuts and sugar, coated with desiccated coconut flakes. They are utterly delicious, healthy and also known to be an aphrodisiac.

Spread the cooked carrot & nut paste evenly and tightly, making sure they stay intact.

Spread the cooked carrot & nut paste evenly and tightly, making sure they stay intact.

With my roots going back to southern Turkey, Antakya, I grew up sampling the very best Cezerye from the nearby Mersin region. Such a delicious and healthy snack, it was always available whenever we wanted some for a treat, therefore I haven’t really thought of making them when I was home. But living  abroad and not having an access to these scrumptious treats  make you brave enough to have a go at them, like making homemade Turkish Delights. I am delighted to report you that compared to making Turkish Delights, Cezerye is so much easier to make, lighter and equally delicious. They are traditionally made with hazelnuts; I used walnuts for my Cezerye recipe and they were delicious. My children absolutely loved them!

Cezerye; delicious carrot paste with walnuts from Mersin, Turkey.

Cezerye; delicious carrot paste with walnuts from Mersin, Turkey.

Carrots have never been sweeter; hope you can have a go and treat yourself, family and friends with these delicious carrot delights. Cezerye keeps well in an air tight container for a week.

Afiyet Olsun,

Ozlem

 

 

 

5.0 from 2 reviews
Homemade Cezerye; Caramalised Carrot Paste Delight with Nuts
 
A delicious and healthy caramalised carrot paste & walnuts dessert from Mersin, Turkey. I hope you can have a go and treat yourself, family and friends with these delicious carrot delights. Cezerye keeps well in an air tight container for a week.
Author:
Recipe type: Turkish desserts
Cuisine: Turkish Cuisine
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • 3 medium to large carrots (app. 400 gr), cleaned and grated
  • 200 gr / 7 oz. / 1 cup white sugar (or 1¼ cup brown sugar)
  • 50 gr / 2 oz. walnuts, chopped into small pieces
  • 8 fl. oz./1 cup water
  • 50 gr/ 2 oz./1/3 cup desiccated coconut flakes to decorate
  • Bowl of water to shape cezerye squares or balls
Instructions
  1. Place the grated carrots, ½ cup water and sugar in a wide, heavy pan.
  2. Cook over medium heat, uncovered, stirring often. Cook this way for about 30 minutes or until all the liquid evaporated.
  3. Stir in the rest of the ½ cup water and cook again on medium heat, stirring continuously (carrots also release their own juice, therefore I prefer to add the liquid a step at a time so that the carrots won’t become mushy).
  4. Cook the carrots until all the juice evaporated and they are softened, this should take another 30 minutes. Using your stirring spoon, mash the cooked carrots to turn into a thick, chunky paste. At this point, they should also thicken, start to caramalise and get sticky (you can take a little bit between your fingers to test whether it sticks or not). Turn the heat off.
  5. Stir in the chopped walnuts to the carrot paste and mix well. Again using your stirring spoon, blend them all well and turn into a thick paste.
  6. Cover a small rectangular dish or tray with parchment paper. Spread the carrot paste evenly and tightly, making sure they stay intact, with a height of 1,5 cm (0.6”).
  7. Cover with a cling film and rest the mixture to settle for 2 hours in fridge.
  8. After 2 hours, start shaping the carrot paste. Have a bowl of water near you. Wet your hands, take a dessert spoonful and shape into small round balls. Or wet your knife and cut into small squares.
  9. Spread the desiccated coconut flakes on a dry surface and coat the carrot balls and squares with the flakes to coat all over.
  10. Cezerye is ready to serve. Cezerye keeps well in an air tight container for a week.
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Baklava 101 from the Masters & Tips to Make the Real Thing at Home

baklava with pistachios, walnuts - even with chocolate!

baklava with pistachios, walnuts – even with chocolate!

Baklava remains as one of the most popular desserts for most of us and we were delighted to have a chance to observe how the real thing is made during our culinary tour in Istanbul, back in April. Our destination was Gulluoglu Baklava in Karakoy, the master of baklava makers since 1800’s.

The irresistable baklava; we will have a go at it during my CM Turkish cooking class

The irresistable baklava; we will have a go at it during my CM Turkish cooking class on 2nd August

What impresses me is the love and passion the Gulluoglu family have for their product and thrive to make each and every baklava an unforgettable experience. “Hear the crack”, says the 6th generation baklava maker Murat, from the Gulluoglu family, as he divides the piece of baklava with his fork while we tour around the production line; “that cracking sound is the sign of freshness, a sign of the finest baklava; a must for us. Good baklava leaves a heavenly taste in your mouth; it shouldn’t be very sweet and heavy; on the contrary it should be light enough to tempt you to eat a small plateful.”

Hundred years of tradition; baklava masters, ustas, perfecting their art.

Hundred years of tradition; baklava masters, ustas, perfecting their art.

Karakoy Gulluoglu runs baklava demonstration sessions at their factory in Karakoy and watching the ustas, masters of baklava in action, is an unforgettable experience. When I say Masters, I mean it; each of the Ustas, Masters, spend 8-10 years at each phase of baklava making to perfect it; rolling the dough; turning the dough into the paper thin sheets of pastry, making the syrup, baking at the right heat..

Clouds of flour worked in baklava dough to make the paper thin sheets of pastry

Clouds of flour worked in baklava dough to make the paper thin sheets of pastry

The very first thing that greets you here is the clouds of flour in the air to make that paper thin sheets of pastry for baklava, all “opened”, stretched by hand with an oklava, rolling pin.

Each sheet of baklava pastry is so thin that you can read the newpaper behind it

Each sheet of baklava pastry is so thin that you can read the newpaper behind it

Once the pastry is paper thin (2mm width), the Ustas, masters, start layering them on a buttered tray. The hand rolled pastry is so thin that you can read the newspaper article behind the pastry sheet.

Paper thin sheets of pastries piled to go on a well buttered tray

Paper thin sheets of pastries piled to go on a well buttered tray

IMG_0725
Emerald colored finest Gaziantep pistachios spread generously on the baklava sheet.

The baklava master layers 20 sheets of pastry ( and sprinkles melted butter on every 4 sheets) then generously spreads finely crushed Gaziantep pistachios – finest and only type used at baklava here-  (or at some cases walnuts) on the 20th layer.

The Usta, master cuts the sheets first horizontally and poured melted butter over them

The Usta, master cuts the sheets first horizontally and poured melted butter over them

Once the next 20 layers of sheets added on top, the master, usta cuts the sheets first horizontally and pours melted butter over them – cutting helps the butter to penetrate every level. He then cuts vertically and splashes another dose of melted butter all around. The baklava is now ready to be baked in the oven at 165 C – 330 F.

We also had a go at baklava with clotted cream and pistachios; kaymakli, fistikli bohca baklava

We also had a go at baklava with clotted cream and pistachios; kaymakli, fistikli  gelin bohcasi

We also had a go at baklava pockets with clotted cream and pistachios; kaymakli, fistikli  gelin bohcasi, another amazing treat.

Having a go at fistikli gelin bohcasi; baklava pockets with thick clotted cream, kaymak, and pistachios

Having a go at fistikli gelin bohcasi; baklava pockets with thick clotted cream, kaymak, and pistachios

While baklava was baked in the oven, the syrup is prepared, consisting of pure cane sugar, lemon juice and water. In Turkey,  there is no honey added in to the baklava syrup.

In the traditional baklava syrup in Turkey, there are pure cane sugar, lemon juice and water – no honey in it-

In the traditional baklava syrup in Turkey, there are pure cane sugar, lemon juice and water – no honey in it-

Once cooked, the hot syrup is poured over the relatively cooler baklava, and then baklava tray goes back to the oven for another 5 minutes or so to soak up the syrup. After this, the baklava is rested at a cool area.

Syrup poured on baklava; now ready to go back to the oven again
Syrup poured on baklava; now ready to go back to the oven again

 And here is the real thing; wonderful, melt in the mouth delicious baklava. It is so light that you feel like eating ta plateful! I hope you get a chance to try the baklava in Turkey.

Fistikli ve cevizli baklava; baklava with pistachios and walnuts - what a treat

Fistikli ve cevizli baklava; baklava with pistachios and walnuts – what a treat

History of Baklava – Baklava Parade during the Ottomans

There are many theories as to the origin of baklava; but there is one thing for sure, that baklava was perfected at the Topkapi Palace Kitchens during the Ottoman Period and it was the Sultans’ favorite dessert. The importance of baklava at the Palace was not only because it was accepted as the token of wealth and sophistication ( as in the mansion houses) but also because it was a State tradition. The baklava parade that started at the end of the 17th century or at the beginning of the 18th century is example of this tradition.
When soldiers were getting their trimonthly pay from the Sultan, they were offered a big feast and on the 15th day of Ramadan they were treated to baklava. On the 15th day of Ramadan when the Sultan visited Hırka-i Serif (the cloak of Prophet Mohammed kept in Topkapı Palace) as a Caliph , baklava from the palace was sent to the Sultan’s Janissary soldiers. It was one tray of baklava for ten soldiers. The delivery of baklava to the soldiers and carrying the baklava to the barracks had then became an imposing parade.

Round tray baklava, cut in triangular slices

Round tray baklava, cut in triangular slices

Testing the Baklava

Here are some of the tests the masters, ustas at Gulluoglu carries out for a perfect baklava:

Hearing Test 
When you place a fork into a baklava you should hear a rustling sound. This means that the thin layers of dough are really thin and baklava is well cooked. The thinner the layers of dough the better the baklava.
Smelling test
When you lift to your mouth, you must smell the butter and the nut or peanut used as a filling. A good baklava should have fine ingredients.
Tasting test 
You can feel the good baklava in your mouth. Good baklava leaves a heavenly taste in your mouth and does not hurt the stomach.

My home made baklava with walnuts; delicious and easier than you think

My home made baklava with walnuts; delicious and easier than you think

I hope all these inspire you; would you like to have a go at making baklava at home? I make it with filo pastry sheets; it is easier than you think and very satisfying. My version is a little less sweeter and fragrant with a touch of lemon taste, here is the recipe  if you would like to have a go. The real thing shouldn’t be very sweet and heavy; on the contrary it should be light enough to tempt you to eat a small plateful. I think this version achieves that.

Enjoying boreks and baklavas in Gulluoglu Karakoy, Istanbul

Enjoying boreks and baklavas in Gulluoglu Karakoy, Istanbul

I will be demonstrating how to make baklava at my next Turkish Cookery class, at Central Market Cooking School, Austin – Texas on 2nd August.

The Blue Mosque, Sultanahmet Camii, Istanbul
The Blue Mosque, Sultanahmet Camii, Istanbul

9th July marks the start of the holy month of Ramadan this year; best wishes to all observing Ramadan; Ramazaniniz Mubarek Olsun. Baklava is one of the traditional desserts enjoyed during Ramadan, I hope you enjoy this special treat and have a chance to make it at home.

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