All posts tagged: healthy cooking

cigar borek

Cigars two ways, savoury and sweet

Börek is a big part of Turkish cuisine and there is a börek shop(börekçi) at every corner. It is the cheapest way to fill oneself up but bad for the waistline. “If you don’t like pizza, you’re not human. If you don’t like börek, you’re an alien.” I just made that up. Ah, those good old days when I was eating spring rolls and beer, spring rolls for a starter, spinach ricotta filo for lunch…. now that I’m cutting down on carbs, it’s nothing but an occasional treat. However, it is always a crowd-pleasing finger food at parties but the frying part I’m not so keen on. Also, the problem is the dough, and my type of börek isn’t easy to find here among a myriad of börek shops as most of it has too much dough than filling. The closest I’ve found is Çengelkoy Börekçisi, which has generous filling and is not too greasy. One evening Mr.O’s parents came to help me put up wallpaper because Mr.O wiggled out of the job again, saying he …

Asparagus New Season Garlic in Polenta Tart Crust

I will have to give a darn good excuse for such a long silence this time, won’t I? What could it be? Yes, I’m getting married..finally!! I’ve been running around for the past 3 weeks – in order of importance – to find the venue, set the date, collect necessary documents and get them notarised, do a medical checkup, which I don’t know what for,  find the wedding dress, and so on. I had no idea what I was putting myself into; it’s quite a lot of work. I was secretly planning for a small intimate event in a winery until I got an absolute ‘NO’ from Mr.O’s parents, and my wedding plan started to shape up in a form completely different to my original ideas. Of course, I was disappointed and they acknowledged it but there is no point in trying to persuade Mr.O’s parents risking disharmony and stress, especially since all guests will be Turks, to whom a wedding is all about dancing. If I’d insisted, the winery wedding could have come true …

Slow Food…11 Hour-Cooked Duck and Sweet Potato Sage Gratin Cheat

It’s been quite a while after the last post about after the Korean event, it’s been full-on but mostly because of me cooking Korean food and socialising offline. I had many people requesting for a Korean dinner and ended up cooking Korean food nonstop for two weeks. I’ve never cooked so much Korean food in such a short period, which was a good exercise to review my Korean palate but also meant that I didn’t have interesting recipes to write about. So after serving the last Korean dinner to Mr.O’s parents, sister and her friend, and cousin, I decided to put a full stop to Korean food for a while and get back to exercising my culinary brain. I’ve had enough of making dumplings and rolling kimbap. Having said that, I’m not sure when the full stop will be removed as I see growing enthusiasm for Korean food after the event so I’m thinking of creating some Korean-inspired recipes occasionally. The downside of Korean food is that it’s very difficult to match it with wines …

Coconut Crumbed Mung Bean Sprout Fritters

Patience…patience… Life in Turkey is very slow, so slow that waiting is big part of my life. Take a deep breath and let it be, let it go… Boşver… the word Mr.O often throws at me who frets over small things. I’ve been waiting for my knife to be delivered for over 5 months, though I was told 3 months. What kind of knife, you would wonder, right? I ordered a special knife when we had a family trip to Babakale. I’m still waiting, bugging Mr.O’s dad to find out if it’s on its way or it’s still being made. We were told that the knife will be passed on to the family friend who is living there and then she will bringing it to a relative in Çanakkale, and then finally to Istanbul, not by post but in person, who will come to Istanbul, and god knows when it will happen. At the moment, two of my knives, Opinel and Sürmene, and guess who won in the tomato slicing competition, which is the best sharpness …

Top 3 Most Delicious Brussels Sprouts Recipes

Mr.O says, “I like the way you cook Brussels sprouts. Why is there no bitterness?” Hahaha, it’s unusual for a Turkish guy to admit that my food is better than his mum’s. He didn’t like Brussels sprouts like any others but I love them, probably because I’ve never had bad experiences. So he complimented my Brussels sprouts miso soup a lot. These days I’m trying to make Mr.O eat while food is warm instead of taking photos before eating. So I’m not taking as many photos of what we eat on a daily basis. However, the bigger reason is that he is losing friends or being ridiculed for eating food, weird food as his Turkish friends call it. Three two and a half years on, we still eat a different food every day. Ok, today let me try this new way of attracting audience. Why are many articles titled as The 10 Most delicious…. The 5 best ways to…etc. But in fact, they are not the best and I think it’s somewhat misleading. I’m not …

Cauliflower-Crusted Baked Fish Nuggets / Kayra Allure

Everyone went to bed with the forewarning of a Siberian snowstorm and of closing of schools last night. It’s a privilege not having to walk to the bakery for the morning bread. If you’re crazy about fresh morning bread like me, you’d plan the hours of buying bread and never mind going out early in the morning to pick up bread. Whenever I think of fresh morning bread, I think of my Bordeaux time with my mentor, who buys bread 3 times a day and is very strict about the morning bread. Life is too short to eat bad bread, he says. Well, one can’t eat a whole loaf of baguette, though one easily can if one doesn’t hear the inner voice that nags you “Eat Healthy!”, but if you can’t finish it all, well, it’s a big food waste, which will be banned in Seattle from this year and which has been restricted in Korea for a long time. Most households have a dehydrator like this at home but in Turkey, they have street …