All posts tagged: vegetarian

stuffed artichoke

Stuffed Artichokes with Shrimps and Peas

Artichokes! It’s that time of the year again. Since last year, I’ve been buying whole artichokes, not only the bottoms, and enjoying stuffing them with various ingredients. This time, I decided to stuff them with peas and shrimps. The peas, which tend to appear all around the year in the west, are a seasonal delicacy. So it becomes a family sport to shell kilos of them for freezing. I often see a woman or husband and wife or a mum and a kid or bearded manly men sitting around the table and shelling the peas outside small restaurants. In my house, peeling garlic and shelling peas or nuts is hubby’s job. I would then freeze some to use for the next few months. It might sound tedious but it’s quite relaxing and even romantic when you do it together! While hubby was working at the peas, I prepared the artichokes. I usually trim them before boiling but this time I boiled them first before scraping out the hairy choke with a spoon. I think it was easier this way so I’ll stick to this method. Don’t throw …

radish miso tahini

KIMCHI Workshop and Radish Spinach Miso Tahini Rice Bowl

It was fun making kimchi with many people and I was proud to share my know-hows and clarify some of the myths surrounding the most essential Korean food. I was also very surprised by the enthusiasm of the participants, who seemed more obsessed with kimchi than me!

I would like to thank those who joined the event and also, Istanbul Cooking School for opening their space for us.

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 …

Baked Artichoke Bottoms Stuffed with Mushroom and Goat Cheese

If you follow me on FB or Instagram, you’d probably have seen some photos of the lovely weekend trip to Çanakkale. I did a wine tasting, ate local specialities such as cheese helva (peynir halvasi), ice cream, and oğlak(kid), yeah!, which can be eaten only through March and April. I’ll dedicate a whole post on the trip later because I think what I saw and did there is worth a whole page and it wasn’t all about food this time. Also, April is extra special for that area because of the Battle of Gallipoli and Anzac Day. So today let’s just talk about food and sharing food. Spring conjures up asparagus and artichoke. Do you remember I was eating lots of white asparagus in France? I sometimes see them in jars at Metro supermarket but I don’t buy them of course – strictly shop locally and find alternatives! In Turkey, when you go to farmers’ markets these days, you see many guys trimming artichoke bottoms. The artichokes here are bigger and how they are cooked …


Cauliflower Steak with Thracian Wine

Winter is almost over as the temperature is heading for the 20 range and the daylight saving will start in started a couple of days ago. For some reason, WordPress is working again so I’m going to cram blog! I couldn’t because of the unbelievable nation-wide power outage yesterday, but it’s more to do with my personal affairs happening all at once lately, which makes it very difficult to sit down and write. Amid all this, I find it important to continue writing and let things off my chest. Some of you might have detected some sort of change in my voice as if molten lava boiling its way through a tiny crack. Well, I’m dramatising it a bit but I think there will be quite a huge change with my life soon but until it really happens, I’ll keep silent not to stir up the good karma, however, I’ll try my best to keep you informed and inspired just about everything I come across, culture, food, history, and my observations and random thoughts, which …