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I teach Turkish cooking classes in England,Turkey & USA, hope you can join us!,
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Turkish cuisine provides healthy, hearty, delicious food for family and friends.
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Ozlem’s Turkish Table at Edinburgh Book Fest, Coming to Texas and more

Merhaba all,

Our magical Turkish Supper Club at Power’s Weybridge – next one is on Aug. 17th

It’s been a very exciting few months of teaching Turkish cookery, sharing recipes from Ozlem’s Turkish Table cookery book at our supper clubs and planning new events. I am very excited to share with you some really exciting events coming up, including being a featured author at the world’s biggest book festival, Edinburgh International Book Festival on Aug. 24th, as well as returning to Central Market Cooking Schools in TX between November 7-10th! I am utterly delighted and can’t wait to meet Turkish food lovers in one of these events below, and I hope to see you at one of the events.

Contents Page, Ozlem’s Turkish Table cookery book, signed copies available at this link

Also delighted to report that over 1,000 copies of Ozlem’s Turkish Table cookery book reached to Turkish food lovers around the world; my sincere thanks to you all for all your support and spreading the word. My special thanks also goes to Pinar Foods UK and GB Publishing for all their valuable support.  I love hearing how folks enjoy recreating recipes from the book, and their creations. Signed copies of Ozlem’s Turkish Table cookery book is still available for a limited period at this link, if you’d like to get it for yourself or give a a gift.

Here are so exciting events coming up; I hope you can join us in one of these and we enjoy Turkish cuisine together.

Turkish Meze Class with Ozlem Warren

Hands On Masterclass, Sunday 22nd July, 12:00 – 3:30pm

Divertimenti Cookery School, London

Our Turkish meze class coming up on July 22nd, at Divertimenti, London

Join Ozlem Warren to recreate a scrumptious meze feast from her homeland, with recipes from her newly released cookery book, Ozlem’s Turkish Table, Recipes from My Homeland. You will be making the much loved ‘Baba Ghanoush’ (Smoked aubergine, pepper and tomatoes with pomegranate molasses), ‘Filo Triangles with Spinach and White cheese, Beyaz Peynir – with thanks to Pinar Food UK-, ‘Muhammara’ (Red pepper paste and walnut dip), ‘Circassian Chicken in Garlic, Walnut and Coriander Sauce, ‘Poached Dried Figs in Light Syrup’ and completing the meal with ‘Rakı’, a Turkish aniseed based drink which is the traditional accompaniment to the meze spread in Turkey.

Booking at Divertimenti Cookery School at this link

Turkish Cookery Course at Amoun College, Amman – Jordan,

July 9th and 10th, 2018

I am delighted to be returning to Amman, Jordan to teach a 2 day Turkish Cookery Course on July 9th and 10th 2018.  We will be covering a feast of classic Turkish recipes during our course. My special thanks to Mrs Suhair Kilani, la Panthera for organising our course, I greatly look forward to sharing delicious Turkish cuisine with food lovers in Amman. For the details of the course and registration, please email Marketing@panhtera-jo.com to reserve your spot, as the participation is limited. I hope you can join us at this rare opportunity to learn classic Turkish recipes.

Ozlem’s Turkish Table at the International Edinburgh Book Festival!

What a true honor to be a part of this world’s biggest book festival, the International Edinburgh Book Festival, with my cookery book Ozlem’s Turkish Table, on Aug. 24th, Friday, 2.30pm – 3.15pm, with the Afternoon Tea with Ozlem Warren event. Even more special is that Ghillie Basan will be conducting the interview, I am a huge fan of her and can’t thank her enough for all her support. Do hope you can join us as we will talk about Antakya, southern Turkish cuisine, recipe tips and more! Booking at this link please, hope to see you there!

A Turkish Summer Feast Supper Club, Power’s Weybridge – Friday, Aug. 17th, 2018

Please join us for a delicious evening of Turkish food and stories from my homeland on Aug 17th, Friday evening, as of 7.30pm at Power’s Weybridge. Pistachio lamb kebabs as well as many vegetarian choices and baklava on offer, as well as my tips on recipes and stories, booking at Power’s Weybridge please – and promises to sell out again soon!

 Returning Central Market Cooking Schools, TX – USA on Nov. 7 – 10th, 2018!

Absolutely delighted to be returning to Central Market Cooking Schools on Nov 7th through 10th to teach a series of cookery classes, this time with my book, Ozlem’s Turkish Table – do hope you can join us! I lived in Austin over 5 years and tought at this wonderful cookery school as a guest chef so I am really excited to return, it will be very special classes. Registration at Central Market Cooking School opens online on 1st October, and classes likely to sell out qucikly, so please save the dates. Here are my teaching dates and venues at Central Market Cooking Schools:

Central Market Houston on Nov. 7th; Austin on Nov. 8th; Dallas on Nov 9th; San Antonio on Nov 10th.

What I have been cooking lately..

Leafy greens with onions, peppers and pine nuts, from Ozlem’s Turkish Table cookery book

We have been enjoying more vegetables with the sunnier weather and this Leafy greens with onions, peppers and pine nuts, from Ozlem’s Turkish Table cookery book (page 153),  inspired from Antakya, fits the bill perfectly. There is leafy vegetable called zilk in Antakya, similar to Swiss chard and locals use either zilk or spinach to make this recipe; you can use kale instead too. Bulgur or lentils are often added to make it more substantial. In my version, I included sweet, red bell peppers and pine nuts instead of bulgur. Adding a splash of fresh lemon juice or a little heat from red pepper flakes, you can serve this warm or cold, as in our Zeytinyaglis, Vegetables cooked in olive oil. Here’s also the link for my recipe in my blog.

Scrumptious Turkish bean salad with onions, olives, eggs

We love this tasty, easy and nourishing Turkish bean salad with olives and eggs, Fasulye Piyazi. It is the traditional accompaniment to Turkish meatballs, our kofte, but I love it as it is for lunch or as a light supper with pide bread and some hummus. It is also vegan and gluten-free so caters for a wide range of dietary needs. This lovely salad is on page 90 at the Ozlem’s Turkish Table cookery book, if you have it. Here’s also the link to my recipe in my blog.

One of the happy Ozlem’s Turkish Table cookery book owner, posting this lovely photo

“Thank you so much for producing this wonderful book; I spent many happy holidays in Turkey and I love Turkish cuisine. It’s a joy to be able to recreate the dishes with your recipes and share with my family – your book is a treasure and I love my signed copy! This was a recent feedback from the Ozlem’s Turkish Table cookery book owner. I hoped my book would inspire folks to enjoy Turkish cuisine and bring happy memories of their visit to Turkey, so these kind feedback means the world to me. Signed copies of Ozlem’s Turkish Table cookery book is still available for a limited period at this link, if you’d like to get a copy.

Many thanks and Afiyet Olsun,

Ozlem

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Our Turkish Cookery Course in Amman, Jordan; A Very Special Trip

Making Sarma, Stuffed vine leaves with participants in Amman, Jordan

Making Sarma, Stuffed vine leaves with participants in Amman, Jordan

Merhaba All,

I have just returned from Amman, Jordan, where we had our 3 day Turkish cookery course; it was a very special trip from the start to beginning and I wanted share some highlights here with you.

JA University students helping out at our Turkish cookery course.

JA University students helping out at our Turkish cookery course.

Preparing for our Turkish cookery course in Jordan, love the fresh produce

Preparing for our Turkish cookery course in Jordan, love the fresh produce

My huge thanks first of all to dear Mrs Suhair Kilani and Panthera Jordan for organising our Turkish Cookery Course in Amman; Mrs Kilani has done so much for spreading the word on Turkish cuisine and make our course happen 2nd time in Jordan, my heartfelt thanks to her. It was very special to return to JA University to teach and I love being with the students there. They have been very enthusiastic and hard working; always a very happy feeling being inspired by them and be able to inspire. I was very touched by all the kindness and generous hospitality of our Jordanian friends , it really has been a very special trip.

Turkish Jordanian Friendship Association Opening

Turkish Jordanian Friendship Association Opening

With dear Suhair Kilani and Manar Bilbesi at the Turkish Jordanian Friendship Association

With dear Suhair Kilani and Manar Bilbeisi at the Turkish Jordanian Friendship Association

I had the honor to be the guest speaker at the opening of the new premises of the Turkish Jordanian Friendship Association. It was an honor to be able to meet Turkish food lovers and have a chance to talk about Turkish cuisine. I have been so touched by dear Jordanians’ love and interest for Turkish cuisine and Turkey.

Potato and bulgur patties at our course in Jordan, it was a huge hit!

Potato and bulgur patties at our course in Jordan, it was a huge hit!

Gozleme, Anatolian flat breads with spinach and cheese, another very popular dish from our Turkich cookery course

Gozleme, Anatolian flat breads with spinach and cheese, another very popular dish from our Turkish cookery course

Zeytinyagli Sarma, Stuffed vine leaves with aromatic rice from our class, big hit

Zeytinyagli Sarma, Stuffed vine leaves with aromatic rice from our class, big hit

We had over 14 classic Turkish recipes we made during our Turkish cookery course. It was wonderful to see the keen interest from the participants and their enjoyment; some of the highlights have been Potato and bulgur rolls with pomegranate molasses, stuffed vine leaves with aromatic rice,  Gozleme, Anatolian flat breads with cheese and spinach and many more.

Islim Kebabi, eggplant slices wrapped around marinated chicken

Islim Kebabi, eggplant slices wrapped around marinated chicken

Making Sekerpare with the participants

Making Sekerpare with the participants

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Cezerye, caramalised carrot paste with walnuts from our class, delicious and healthy

We also made other classics such as Iskender Kebab, Stuffed peppers and tomatoes, Dolma, this delightful, gluten-free Islim Kebabi, marinated chicken wrapped around eggplant slices,  Manti, Turkish dumplings and many more. Desserts we made included Sekerpare, Semolina cookies in syrup, Cezerye, caramalised carrot paste with walnuts, Semolina Halva and the very special Tavuk Gogsu; Ottoman milk pudding with finely shredded chicken. I will share the recipe of this unusual but delicious dessert in a separate post.

Our visit to the Turkish Embassy in Amman

Our visit to the Turkish Embassy in Amman

Our Turkish cookery course in Amman has been very generously supported by the Turkish Embassy in Amman; it was a great honor to be able to visit our Turkish Ambassador, Mr Onal, to give our thanks for their support. Also very humbled by his kind words for our contribution to Turkish cuisine, we hope to organise many more of these courses in the near future.

A delightful pomegranate tree at TIKA office in Amman

A delightful pomegranate tree at the TIKA office in Amman

Turkish tea, cay, very kindly offered at the TIKA office

Turkish tea, cay, very kindly offered at the TIKA office

More kindness and hospitality followed, we felt home at the wonderful TIKA office in Amman and seeing their garden, I was transported to my grandmother’s 450 year old stone home in  old Antakya. She used to have pomegranate, fig and walnut trees in her garden and we would wake up with the doves singing, seeing these beautiful trees and hearing the doves were a very magical reminiscence.

TV interview during our Turkish cookery course in Amman.

TV interview during our Turkish cookery course in Amman.

Giving certificates to the participants of our Turkish cookery course

Giving certificates to the participants of our Turkish cookery course

Last day of our Turkish cookery course was filmed and I was interviewed on Turkish cuisine and its perception in Amman, to be aired on national TV. We also made it to Jordanian Times apparently! So good to see all this interest for Turkish cuisine. Another highlight was giving certificates to the participants of our 3 day Turkish cookery course, they have been all so enthusiastic and wonderful.

Turkish coffee, enjoyed by everyone at our Turkish cookery course.

Turkish coffee, enjoyed by everyone at our Turkish cookery course.

We made everyone Turkish coffee at the end; many thanks to Ozerlat Coffee for providing our Turkish coffee, everyone greatly enjoyed the aromatic taste and the traditions, rituals behind this special drink, it really is more than a drink for us.

Our Turkish Cookery Course in Jordan has been a very special trip from start to the end, my heartfelt thanks to everyone for their warm hospitality, can’t wait to come back again!

Brief but very Special Stop in Istanbul

Hello from Istanbul; a very precious stop at the Bosphorus

Hello from Istanbul; a very precious stop at the Bosphorus

Icing on the cake of this trip has been a brief but very special stop in Istanbul afterwards; the city I adore. As soon as I landed, I was by the Bosphorus in Bebek, a very special, memorable moment!

Dear Claudia Turgut's photo exhibition at PositivIST, Arnavutkoy, Istanbul

Dear Claudia Turgut’s photo exhibition at PositivIST, Arnavutkoy, Istanbul

Mum, my lovely sister Oznur and me together, a very precious moment

Mum, my lovely sister Oznur and me together, a very precious moment

Dear friend and ex-fellow blogger, owner of the wonderful A Seasonal Cook in Turkey blog Claudia Turgut has now a wonderful new passion, photography. She and some other photographers opened this lovely photo exhibition called PositivIST, sharing Istanbul they love through their photographs. Thanks to my lovely sister, we managed to make it to the Exhibition and met lovely Claudia. The exhibition continues until October 13th, located in Arnavutkoy Istanbul and highly recommended; gorgeous photos of Istanbul from these wonderful artists.

Fascinating Bosphorus and Istanbul

Fascinating Bosphorus and Istanbul

Glass of Cay by the Bosphorus, heavenly

Glass of Cay by the Bosphorus, heavenly

 Time to say farewell to this fascinating city, Istanbul, until next time; it was a huge dose of home, seeing loved ones being at home, treasured every minute.

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Ezme; Spread of Tomatoes, Onions, Peppers with Red Pepper Paste

Scrumptious spread of Ezme; makes a great appetizer and goes really well with grilled meat and vegetables.

Have you ever tried the delicious Turkish mezze, Ezme? This tomato based delicious appetizer has a wonderful mixture of sweet, spicy and acidic flavors and it is one of my favorite mezzes served in the kebab houses at home, a very memorable gastronomic experience.

Humble and fresh ingredients like tomatoes, onion, peppers transform to a magical taste with a touch of red pepper paste and extra virgin olive oil.

Ezme is a very typical Turkish mezze, served in kebab houses throughout Turkey. With a touch of hot red pepper paste and extra virgin olive oil, these simple but fresh ingredients like tomatoes, onion, herbs and good olive oil produce this surprisingly complex yet refreshing and a very more-ish mezze. You can make Ezme ahead of time, so it is very entertaining friendly too.

Biber Salcasi; Turkish hot red pepper paste add a lot of flavour to dishes; you can also easily make at home too.

 

There are quite a few variations for Ezme; my favorite is the way it is done in the Southeast Turkey, where my roots are from.  Biber Salcasi,  Turkish red pepper paste is a major staple in the regions of Gaziantep  and Antakya and a little of this wonderful paste adds such a rich, complex flavor to the Ezme. You can also make red pepper paste at home with my recipe, easy and delicious. An important trick to Ezme is to rub the red pepper paste and tomato paste to the onions with your hands so that the paste infuses; these also soften the onions and make them more palatable.

 

You can serve Ezme over crackers or pita bread as an appetizer; it can also accompany kebabs, grilled meats and roasted vegetables beautifully too. Why not try Ayran, delicious Turkish traditional yoghurt drink to accompany this wonderful feast?

Signed copies of Ozlem’s Turkish Table book now available for limited period

Turkish cuisine has a long and rich tradition of incorporating hot and cold mezes, regional, delicious dips and salads, variety of vegetarian, vegan and gluten free courses. They have all been included at my cookery book, Ozlem’s Turkish Table; signed copies of my cookery book is available at this link.

 

Serves 4                                   Preparation time: 15 – 20 minutes

4 medium-sized ripe tomatoes, halved and seeds removed
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2-3 small spicy pointy green peppers –(use less or more depending on how spicy you like)
15ml/1 tbsp red pepper paste (or a little less if you prefer less spicy) – If you can’t get red pepper paste, you can add a touch of spice with 1-2 tsp red pepper flakes
15ml/1 tbsp tomato paste
Juice of half a lemon
Handful of flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
Handful of fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
30ml/ 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Combine the red pepper paste and tomato paste with the onions in a bowl. Knead and mix them well with your hands so that the paste infuses to the onions; this also softens the onions and make them more palatable.  If you can’t get red pepper paste, you can add a touch of spice with 1-2 tsp red pepper flakes and infuse them to the  onions with the tomato paste.

Ezme is ready to be enjoyed; though not traditional, I like to add a few walnuts over Ezme when serving, for extra texture and taste.

Stir in the tomatoes, peppers, parsley and mint, combine well. Drizzle the extra virgin olive oil over. Season with salt and ground pepper and give them all a good mix. Cover and keep in the fridge until serving. It would be best if you can let the Ezme sit for an hour or so before serving; this will help the flavors mingle & settle.

You can prepare Ezme ahead of time; it tastes even better the next day!

Ezme is delicious over flat bread, crackers, pitta bread. I like to add a few walnuts over when serving, love the added texture and taste it adds.

Though not traditional, I like to sprinkle a few walnuts around Ezme when serving; I love the added texture and taste walnuts brings to Ezme.

I hope you enjoy making your own Ezme, and that it brings happy memories of your visit to Turkey or inspires for a visit! : )

Afiyet Olsun,

Ozlem

 

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