There is one huge part of our trip to Turkey that I've completely neglected. The food. I've been dying to talk about it, but it was simply too massive. It had to have it's own post. Speaking of massive and food, everywhere we went the Turkish people were completely shocked we were American. And in the most ass-backward, backhanded compliment ever they informed us, but you are not fat. Which is especially hypocritical coming from Turkish people, who aren't exactly petite.
This is Turkish delight. Which is a jelly-like bite sized cube of fruits and nuts doused in powdered sugar. I thought it was kind of cool, albeit messy. But, Craig and the kids did not find it in any way delightful.
Bread dunked in oil. Leavened bread, not the flat bread I had imaged Turkey to have. Sometimes it had chopped olives, sometimes spices. Sometimes both.
I got a roasted vegetable platter with tomato dip on our first night in Istanbul. Sounds pretty boring right? Wrong. I don’t know what kind of magic oven they cooked this in, but they were simply the best veggies I have ever eaten. EVER.
Turks also love roasted jalapenos. And now, so do I.
Unlike Moroccan cuisine, the Turks use dairy. This was breakfast in our hotel in Cappadocia with a sumptuously salty feta. Thank god I'm not lactose intolerant because I scarfed down more than my fair share of it.
Also in Cappadocia was the world's best lentil soup. Yes, seriously, in the whole world.
Here's the funky cafe where it was served by the server's mom who is the cook.
Oh, the regional specialty in Cappadocia is cooking in little clay pots. Little pots that must be broken open to reveal it's contents. (And apparently a chopped pot does boil.)
I picked up these random cookies at the store. They were sorta shortbread-ish with apricot jam and totally yummy. Unfortunately, the kids also liked them.
This was a gourmet doner kebab. Check it out it's got beef, chicken, lamb AND red cabbage in it. The kids didn't like it. And I'm not one to waste food, so I helped myself to their leftovers.
Then we ate at Ficcin.
Where I had these ficcin' awesome stuffed peppers.
And the kids had these beef and potato filled raviolli things swimming in sour cream. See I told you Turks love dairy. However, my kids did not love this, so again, I had to help finish them off. My jeans were starting to feel tight.
The fish was so fresh, it didn't even smell fishy. But it was so good it would make you cry. Unless that was the onion.
Turkey has a lot of Greek dishes. Like these stuffed grape leaves. Which again, the kids didn't like so much. And neither did Craig really. So I'll take this one for the team.
There's baklava everywhere, another Greek influence. They have any kind of nut you can imagine and even have chocolate and diabetic. Because after you become addicted to the savory sweetness of the baklava, you'll have diabetes. How American is that?
Then there's hummus which every country claims its own. But, we were ready to disown the child who loved hummus so much that the next day we couldn't stand the smell of said child and began hummus restrictions.
This was the sample platter at a place called Altin Balik. It looks good, but it wasn't. And that's also how I describe the whole restaurant. You see, when they brought the bill, they over charged us for everything. And the people next to us too. And later, when we read the on-line reviews, we discovered that they have a long history of over charging tourists.
So, although you can eat the world's largest teenage mutant ninja shrimp there, don't do it.
The night before we left, we ate at the Istanbul Culinary Institute. And that's where I devoured this steak and onion tart.
It was looking like the bitter end of our trip. Until the server brought us some free desserts. Then it was just the bittersweet end.
Well almost, then we had a 9 hour layover in Madrid where I had this sangria. And then I forgot all about how tight my jeans had become with those few extra pounds I gained in Turkey. Huh, I wonder if now I'll get mistaken for a Turk...