Turkish cuisine provides healthy, hearty, delicious food for family and friends.
Find out more

Cookery Classes

I teach Turkish cooking classes in England,Turkey & USA, hope you can join us!,
Find Out More

Cakes and Desserts

Cherry & Almond Clafoutis – Visneli, Bademli Tatli

In the summer time Turkey’s orchards yield an abundant range of mouthwatering fruits. Cherries are amongst them; they are native to Anatolia and plentiful. We eat them in abundance as fresh fruit, make wonderful cherry jams out of them and put them in cakes and puddings. I adopted this lovely, fruity, easy to make pudding from the cookery book River Cottage Everyday, by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, one of my favorite chefs in England. I added almonds to this classic French pudding, and the outcome took me to my childhood, the very welcoming smells of lovely cherry cakes and puddings after coming back from school, a very happy sight! It goes very well with coffee and tea or served as a dessert.

I like to stone the cherries, as the pudding is be heavily consumed by small children. You’re welcome not to stone them if you’d like and make the most of the juices.

Serves 6

Preparation time: 15-20 minutes Cooking Time: 40 minutes

425 gr / 15 oz cherries, stalks removed and stoned
50 gr / 1 3/4 ounce plain flour
30 ml / 2 tablespoon almond flakes
A pinch of sea salt
100 gr / 3 1/2 ounces caster sugar
3 medium eggs, lightly beaten
240 ml / 8 fl oz whole milk
Icing sugar for dusting (optional)

Preheat oven to 180 C/ 350 F / Gas Mark 4

Lightly butter a 25 cm (10″) round baking dish or a 25×20 cm (10″x8″) rectangular one. Spread the cherries out in a single layer in the baking dish.

Sift the flour and salt into a bowl and stir in the almond flakes and sugar. Make a well in the centre and add the beaten eggs. Gradually draw in the flour from the sides, mixing well. Then beat in the milk, a little at a time, to form a smooth batter.

Pour the batter over the cherries and bake in the preheated oven for about 40 minutes, until golden and puffed up. This pudding is best eaten warm though still enjoyable when cold. You can dust with icing sugar before serving if you like. Serve it plain, or with some vanilla ice cream or clotted cream.

Afiyet Olsun!

Continue Reading

Turkish Delight – Lokum

We got a package from my parents in Turkey recently – a happy sight!-. They love spoiling us (especially the grandchildren!) and the package was full of treats; Turkish delights, pistachio nuts, Turkish coffee and many more. The Turkish delight is a special treat for my children and the real thing is not too sweet but fragrant, moist and full of flavor.

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 of Turkey. Dried fruits, nuts, seeds and desiccated coconut are incorporated into the luscious mouthfuls of fragrant jelly. 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 sade – plain lokum, delicately flavored with fragrant rose water. However, you may wish to add shelled and chopped nuts of your choice – hazelnuts, pistachio nuts or walnuts work extremely well. I strongly suggest making it a day before serving, so that the mixture can settle down well.

My late mother-in-law, dear Penny Mum, absolutely loved Turkish Delight, and this is for her memory.

Serves 6 – 8
Preparation time – 15 minutes Cooking time – 20 minutes

450 gr / 1 lb fine white sugar
470 ml / 1 pint/ 2 cups water
1 teaspoon lemon juice
3 tablespoons rose water
6 tablespoons corn flour / cornstarch
sifted icing sugar / confectioners sugar for dusting

Line a shallow tray or pan (8in square) with a piece of muslin and dust with a little corn flour. Combine the rose water and corn flour to make a smooth paste and set a side.

In a pan combine sugar, water and lemon juice. Bring to the boil, and over a medium heat, stir constantly, allowing the sugar to dissolve and taking care the mixture doesn’t burn.

Add a little of the hot sugar syrup to the rose water and corn flour and mix thoroughly. Remove the pan of sugar syrup from the heat, add the rose water and corn flour mix and whisk thoroughly.

Return to a medium heat, continue to stir until the mixture takes on a clearer appearance and thickens to a jelly type consistency. Remove from the heat; at this point add chopped nuts of your choice (optional).

Pour the mixture onto the prepared tray and allow to cool and set, preferably overnight.
Turn out the lokum onto a work surface well dusted with icing sugar. Remove the muslin, cut into squares, dust generously with more icing sugar and serve.

Continue Reading

Apricot Dessert with Walnuts – Cevizli Kayisi Tatlisi


Turkish Delight, Apricot Dessert, Aubergines 010

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 easy dessert is great for parties, sharing with friends or family or just indulging yourself.

Serves 4-6

Preparation time – 10 minutes Cooking time – 25 minutes

225 gr / 8 oz dried Turkish apricots
3 fl oz / 1/3 cup water
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons sugar

For the filling:

75 gr /1/2 cup crushed walnuts
50 gr / 1/4 cup sugar

crushed pistachio nuts for garnish

Preheat oven to 180 C/ 350 F

Soak the dried apricots in warm water for 10-15 minutes. Then drain the water.

Split open the apricots and stuff each apricot with a spoonful of crushed walnut and sugar mixture and close it up. Slightly grease a baking tray with oil and place the apricots on it. Pour the water over the tray. Place a little butter on the top of each stuffed apricot. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of sugar over the apricots and bake in the oven for 25 minutes.

Arrange them in a serving dish and sprinkle over some crushed pistachio nuts. This light dessert goes well with some vanilla ice cream or clotted cream.

Afiyet Olsun,


Continue Reading