All posts filed under: Recipes

pork kimchi

Slow Roast Kimchi Pork with Super Crispy Skin – Paired with Mavroudi or Mavrud of Thrace

Celebration and indulgence… That night marked the end of the long-distance living or dual location households. It’s OVER! Hooray! It was hard; it was costly; it was stressful; it was emotionally damaging. I know many couples are doing this, whether or not by choice, and I wonder how they manage it. Well, it didn’t fit for us and the biggest struggle was not being able to eat together and, for him, not finding any food outside. When I asked what he wanted for dinner on his moving day, he screamed ‘PORK!’. So I took out two packets of pork shoulder cut from the freezer the first thing in the morning. I scored the skin in a criss-cross pattern and rubbed it generously with coarse salt. I also drizzled some kimchi juice over the meat and sprinkled Schiuan pepper and rosemary. After resting in the fridge the whole morning, it was ready for the oven. Since the cut was individually packaged, not in whole, I had to find a way to make it sit with the skin …

nutella bread

Boozy Naughty Nutella Flower Brioche

Belated Happy New Year to all my readers! Another year has rolled in silently, and my first post in the new year is a sunflower Nutella brioche. My mind has been racing with many thoughts and some new plans to simplify my life are brewing slowly, which explains the silence. 2017 was a very volatile year in terms of relationship and work, which involved two-city life. It has finally come to an end and we will start 2018 with more stability. Fingers crossed xx What it would mean, though, that I won’t be able to eat with you in Istanbul as much as I’d like to. It’s already happened, I know, since I took a semi-permanent séjour at the winery. Having said that, my winery posts are among the most popular posts on my blog! Anyway, I’ll continue to inspire with delicious stories, travels, more adventures as a cellar rat and a WSET Dip student, and the stories of living in Canakkale. Nutella… Mr.O has a weakness for it.  Hey, who isn’t? But not for …

pumpkin tortellini

Pumpkin Leek Tortellini with Duck Ragu

Finally comes the duck story… And I’m afraid yet delighted that you’ll hear more duck stories this winter. How come? Well, I’m spreading the duck spirits around me and so many people are eager to eat more of the delicacy. Leading up to the last day of my sejour at the winery, I was thinking hard everyday about the duck: how and when to cook it.  Sensing the accumulated anticipation of almost two months, I decided to get the task over and done with. Originally, it was destined for Duck a l’Orange, but I incorporated a Chinese Peking Duck method by adding more herbs and oriental spices such as star anise and cinnamon, and also by drying out the skin for crispiness. The warm aromas had the effect of stimulating a holiday mood as well. After resting in the fridge overnight, rubbed with salt and spices, it was ready for the oven the next morning. Despite some unexpected events, I managed to cook it for as long as 2.5 hours. The tough parts, the wings …

baked fig

Baked Fresh Fig, Cheese, Lavender Filo Pie

Morning air is getting crisper and I watch the vine leaves changing their colour everyday. I have no idea how fast summer has slipped away without having a proper swim! Despite the hectic daily routines at the winery, I thought I’d be respectful of those who are wondering about my whereabouts and waiting for delicious stories. I’m far from my kitchen and real life, and am living a dream life. I’ve lived through the full ripening seasons here and the harvest has started and the daily work leaves me little time to go online. I’ve learned and am still learning a lot and I’ll share my experiences here once the most important part of the harvest ends. Are the figs still around? Before coming back to the winery for harvest, I had a short break at home. Whenever I’m back, I just dive into the kitchen and get cooking, though there’s no one else to eat with. Farmers markets and streets were full of figs and other forest fruits that show up for a short …

parmesan okra

Two Delicious Okra Recipes You should try

Okra aka. lady’s finger. Do you like it or hate it? Hubby wouldn’t even look at it. My encounter with the strange vegetable was in Turkey and I’d had some dishes with it but had never been so keen till I listened to the podcast, Leah Chase: The cook who changed America. Though I’ve never had the Gumbo stew, I can imagine what it’s like and it sounds delicious. Okra, originated in Ethiopia, is found in many dishes in south east countries and many with seafood as in this. There’s a plenty of Indian okra dishes, too, including this one, which looks yummy and healthy. Here in Turkey, it’s called ‘bamya‘, and usually cooked with tomato based stew with or without meat and is, as usual, overcooked. So unless you trick yourself to like it, many people get put off by the slimy texture. The longer it’s cooked, the slimier it gets. So it’s useful in stews and soups as a thickener and I sneaked some chopped okro(plural) into baked beans for English breakfast one morning. And …

octopus

Living the dream: Wine&Art, Octopus Carpaccio&Romesco

With the solstice and Ramadan behind us, summer is getting into a full swing here. Many people are already on their summer holiday or are busy planning for it. Mr.O and I are also pondering the idea of doing a road trip along the Aegean coast in August to mark our 5 year romance. BUT it all depends on how things will pan out, especially the winery job I’ll be taking from the next month. What? Winery? Yes, you heard me right! I’ll be working in Chateau Kalpak Vineyards from July till the harvest. How about that! I’m so excited! Finally my dream is being realised, and what’s even more exciting is the fact that the winery is very prestigious and my absolute favourite in Turkey. It will be a precious experience and a huge leap before jumping into a WSET Diploma. I won’t give away so much at this point so keep following my journey as I live my dream. To start off, I’ll be assisting with their International Art Festival and Workshop, which will …