Friday, September 17, 2010

Stuffed Like a Turkey in Turkey!

Wow!  I feel like I have been eating non-stop since arriving in Istanbul.  All the food here is amazing and except for the Aryan, a salty/sour yogurt drink, I have enjoyed everything I have tried so far, and boy have I tried a lot!

I went to a restaurant called Kofteci Huseyin that makes the best kofte in Istanbul.  Kofte are delicious meatballs that are served with salad and a spicy sauce.  It is almost like eating mini burgers.

Lunch is served!  Kofte and salad.

After my kofte lunch I stopped in at Sakarya Tatlicisi for dessert.  Here you can get a special dessert called Ayva Tathsi, which means quince dessert in Turkish.  A quince is kind of like a big apple.  To make the dessert the quinces are baked so they get gooey and sticky, just like the inside of an apple pie.  They are then topped with thick Turkish cream known as kaymakli.  It is just like vanilla ice cream, except not frozen.

Ayva Tathsi with a large serving of kaymakli.
I have also had meze in Istanbul at a restaurant called Giritli.  Meze is when you eat a whole bunch of appetizers as a meal.  At Giritli they gave me a huge amount of food, I could hardly finish it all.  I started with meze, then warm meze which was an octopus leg and fried calamari.  Then I was given grilled sea bass, and finally dessert which was a paste of walnuts and molasses mixed with apple.  I was stuffed after all that yummy food, but wait, there is always room for ice cream!

This was just the start of an amazing lunch at Giritli.
No visit to Istanbul would be complete without "dondurma".  Dondurma is an ice cream that is made with orchid tubers so it is kind of like eating ice cream that is really chewy, almost like frozen gum.  The best part of buying dondurma is the show the seller puts on for you before he hands the cone over to you to enjoy.

I will have to go back for more dondurma before I leave Istanbul.
I wonder what will be on the menu tomorrow in Istanbul?


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