Binnur's Turkish Cookbook

TurkishCookbook.com - Delicious, healthy and easy-to-make Ottoman & Turkish recipes

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Kunefe

Kunefe
1/2 Package Shredded Dough ~225 gr (1 package = 454 gr)
1 stick unsalted butter (125 gr = 8 tbsp = 1/2 cup), melted
2 tbsp milk

200 gr Feta cheese, unsalted - Soak in water and drain 3-4 times within 24 hours, then puree with the blender or press with a fork. You may also use unsalted Mozzarella cheese instead of Feta cheese.

Syrup:
1 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tbsp lemon juice

1 tbsp Grape Molasses + 2 tbsp butter, room temperature
23 cm (9 inch) pie plate (if you like thinner Kunefe, you may use a larger dish)

To prepare the syrup; place the water and sugar in a medium sized pot. Bring to a boil and continue boiling for 5 minutes. Then simmer for about 15 minutes and turn the heat off. Add lemon juice and put aside.

Put half the package of Shredded Dough in the food processor and pulse a few times. Brush the inside of the Pyrex dish with the butter and Grape Molasses mixture. Place half of the shredded dough evenly and press on them with your palm (picture). Drizzle half of the butter&milk mixture with the brush. Spread the cheese on top evenly (picture). Then spread the second half of the shredded dough. Drizzle the rest of the butter all over the top with the brush.

Preheat the oven to 375 F (190 C)*. Place the dish on the middle rack. When the top takes a light golden colour take it out of the oven. Then slide it on a plate. Brush the dish again with butter and Grape Molasses. Turn it upside down and bake the other side until it's light golden brown. Immediately pour the lukewarm syrup all over evenly.

Serve this traditional Turkish Kunefe dessert while still hot with a dollop of Turkish Kaymak** and sprinkle ground pistachios all over the top.

* If you like you can cook Kunefe over the stove over medium heat in a large pan.
** President Choice (Loblaws in Toronto) brand name has double cream (40%) in a small plastic container. It is not Turkish Kaymak but it is delicious:)

Bairam Menu:
- Spinach Soup with Cream, Elbasan Kebab, Pilaf with Sweet Peas, Shepherd's Salad and Swiss Chard Log Borek.

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Thursday, September 25, 2008

Elbasan Kebab

(Kuzu Elbasan Kebabi / Elbasan Tava / Yogurtlu Guvec)

Elbasan Kebab
2 pieces of Lamb leg or shoulder blade chops
1 tbsp butter
1 onion, peeled, whole
4 cups hot water
Salt
Pepper
1/s tsp oregano

Sauce:
1/2 cup plain Turkish yogurt
2 tbsp flour, all purpose
1 egg yolk

Garnish:
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp tomato paste
1/2 tsp paprika

Fry both sides of the lamb pieces with 1 tbsp butter for about 3 minutes. Add the whole onion, 4 cups hot water, salt and pepper in it. Turn the heat to high. When the water starts bubbling, turn the heat down to low. Cook the lamb pieces for about 2 hours until between 3/4 - 1 cups of water is left.

Place the cooked lamb pieces in an oven dish. Strain the water all over and sprinkle some oregano over the top. Whisk the all Sauce ingredients in a small bowl, pour over the lamb pieces.

Meanwhile, melt the butter in a small sauce pan. Add the tomato paste and paprika. Pour all over the yogurt sauce.

Preheat the oven to 400 F (200 C). Place the dish on middle rack of the oven and cook for 25-30 minutes. Serve Elbasan Kebab while still warm.

2 servings.

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Sunday, September 21, 2008

Spinach Soup with Cream

(Kremali Ispanak Corbasi)

Spinach Soup with Cream
1,250 gr spinach, washed, drained
1 tbsp butter
1 onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, chopped
2 tbsp plain flour
3 cups chicken stock
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
4 tbsp heavy cream

Saute the onion with butter for 2-3 minutes. Add the garlic and saute for about one more minute. Add the flour, stir and slowly pour the chicken stock in it while stirring constantly. When it starts to boil, add the spinach, lemon juice, paprika, salt and pepper. Cook over medium heat for about 15-20 minutes. Pour it into the blender and blend until smooth. Put 1 tablespoon of cream on top. Serve with Bread Slices with Garlic.

4 servings.

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Friday, September 19, 2008

Artichokes Stuffed with Shrimp

(Karidesli Enginar Dolmasi - Marmara Region)

Artichokes Stuffed with Shrimp
4 Artichokes, peeled, cleaned, see Artichokes with Rice in Olive Oil
1/4 cup water
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp sugar
Salt

Filling:
150 gr medium sized shrimp, frozen, peeled and de-veined, thawed
10-12 bottom mushrooms, brushed, cut in halves
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cubanelle pepper, cut in bite sizes
1/2 cup diced tomato, canned or fresh
1-2 garlic cloves, chopped
Salt
Pepper

Mozzarella cheese, grated

Place the artichokes in a shallow pan. Add the water, olive oil, sugar and salt. Cover the lid and cook over medium heat until the artichokes are tender.

Meanwhile saute the cubanelle peppers with olive oil for 2-3 minutes in a pan. Add the garlic, tomato, salt and pepper. Cook for about 8-10 minutes with lid on over low heat. Add the mushrooms and cook for another 4-5 more minutes. Throw the shrimps in it, stir and turn the heat off.

Place the cooked artichokes in an oven dish. Arrange the filling over the tops of each. Sprinkle some grated mozzarella cheese all over.

Preheat the oven to 400 F (200 C). Place the dish on middle rack of the oven and cook until the cheese melts.

4 servings.

Meal Ideas:
- Fish Soup, Fried Cauliflowers and Carrots, Bread with Black Olives and Flour Helva.

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Saturday, September 13, 2008

Chicken with Eggplants and Chickpeas

(Tavuklu Dograma)

Chicken with Eggplants and Chickpeas
2 pieces chicken breast, skinless, boneless
Salt
Pepper
1 1/2 tbsp butter
15-16 pearl onions, peeled
1/4 cup crushed tomatoes, in can
3/4 cup water, warm
1/2 cup chickpeas, canned, rinsed
1 medium size eggplant, peeled, cut in bite sizes, soak in salty water for 15 min then squeeze
1-2 garlic cloves, smashed with salt
2 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp crushed pepper
1 large tomato, peeled, sliced
1 cubanelle pepper, seeds discarded, cut in medium sized chunks
1/2 cup water, warm
Salt
pepper

Sauce:
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp mint

Season the chicken pieces with salt and pepper. Fry both sides with butter and pearl onions for about 4-5 minutes in a medium sized pot. Pour 1/4 cup crushed tomato and 3/4 cup warm water all over. Cook for about 20 minutes with the lid closed over medium heat.

Add the chickpeas, eggplants, garlic and lemon juice. Arrange the tomato slices over the top side by side, and then the cubanelle peppers over the tomatoes. Pour in 1/2 cup of water in the pan from the side. Cover and cook for about 30 minutes over medium heat.

Put the dish on a serving dish. Lastly, put the olive oil and mint in a frying pan and heat it up, immediately pour all over the dishes.

2 servings.

Meal Ideas:
- Rustic Red Lentil Soup, Pilaf with Orzo, Strawberry Compote and Tahini Bread with Turkish Coffee.

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Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Strawberry Compote

(Çilek Kompostosu)

Strawberry Compote
500 g (1 pint) strawberries, rinsed, cut in bite sizes
1/2 cup sugar
2 cups water

Bring the sugar and water to boil in a medium cooking pot. Turn the heat down to medium-low and add the strawberries in it. Cook for about 3-4 minutes.

Pour into a bowl and let it cool. Then chill in the fridge. Serve in individual bowls with Pilaf on the side.

If the strawberries are tasteless and hard to eat, make this traditional Strawberry Compote or delicious Strawberry Topping for ice cream:)

2 servings.

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Saturday, September 06, 2008

Lentil Borek

(Mercimek Boregi)

Lentil Borek
10 sheets Phyllo Pastry

Sauce:
2 tbsp salted butter, melted
50 ml milk, warm

Filling:
3/4 cup green lentils, soaked in water overnight, washed and drained
1 onion, chopped
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp tomato paste
1 tsp red pepper paste
1 1/2 cup beef broth
1 tsp cumin
Salt
Pepper

Top:
Sesame seeds

To cook the filling: Saute the onion with olive oil for about 3-4 minutes. Add the lentils and saute for another 4-5 minutes. Then add the rest of the filling ingredients. Cook until the lentils soften and all the water evaporates over medium-low heat, stir occasionally. Let it cool down a little bit.

Mix the sauce ingredients in a small bowl. Place the 1st sheet of Phyllo Pastry on the counter, brush some sauce all over it. Put the 2nd sheet on it, lightly brush the sauce on it. Cut them with a knife and divide in two. Put some filling on the bottom side of each sheet (picture). First fold the long sides over the filling (picture). Then close up the top (picture). And fold down each one. Brush the open end with the sauce and close it up (picture). Finish all the sheets.

Place parchment paper on an oven tray and arrange the Borek with the folded side facing down. Brush the tops with the sauce and sprinkle some sesame seeds all over.

Preheat the oven 375 F (190 C). Bake for 20 minutes until the tops take a golden colour.

You can serve Lentil Borek with Ayran or Cold Tomato Soup.

Makes 10 borek.

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Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Turkish Meat Loaf

(Dalyan Kofte)

Turkish Meat Loaf
Kofte Ingredients:
500 gr lean ground beef (fat 23%)
1 small onion, grated
1 egg
1 slice of Turkish bread without the crust (1 cm thick), soak the bread into milk, then squeeze the milk out
2 tbsp breadcrumbs or 1 slice of Turkish bread without the crust, crumbled
1/4 cup crushed tomatoes, in a can
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp pepper
Salt
Pepper

Glaze:
2 tbsp crushed tomatoes, canned
1 tsp red pepper paste, mild
1 tsp honey

Vegetables:
1/2 cup beef broth
1 tbsp butter
2-3 tbsp crushed tomatoes, canned
1/2 cup sweet peas, frozen, rinse with warm water
1 small carrot, peeled, cut in cubes

Garnish:
3-4 broiled egg, sliced

Mix all the kofte ingredients using your hands in a large bowl. Roll into a firm loaf about 20-22 cm in length and 10 cm wide. Put parchment paper on the oven tray and place the kofte on it. Mix the glaze ingredients and brush it over the top of the kofte.

Preheat the oven to 350 F (180 C). Place the tray on the middle rack of the oven and cook for about 1 hour and 30 minutes. Put the tray aside and let it sit for 10 minutes before slicing to serve.

Meanwhile cook all the vegetable ingredients over medium-low heat with the lid closed until the carrots are tender in a small pot.

Place the sliced Dalyan Kofte on a service plate. Put one egg slice over each Kofte. Arrange the cooled vegetables around and serve.

4 servings.

Meal Ideas:
-Tomato Soup with Cream, Pilaf with Almonds, Raisin Compote, Fried Eggplant with Cheese and Mastic Pudding.

* Traditionally the boiled egg, peas and carrots should be placed in the middle of the Kofte before giving it the log shape. But this way it's easier and the taste is the same:)

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