Borek with Kataifi

Kadayıf Böreği

Kataifi, or shredded phyllo dough, is a very common dessert ingredient in the Middle Eastern, Turkish and Greek cuisines. Like baklava, it is sweetened with sugar syrup or honey. There are some varities for preparing it. The most popular one is “kunefe” which has unsalted cheese in it and is served while it is still warm.

Borek with Kataifi

In Turkey, it is very easy to find a phyllo dough maker, and most of the time those stores have kataifi dough as well. In the US, however, I could not find uncooked kataifi for a very long time. There are precooked kataifi in the Middle Eastern, Turkish or Greek markets, and as you can imagine, you have limited options with those.

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Semolina Halva

İrmik Helvası

Halva is the name of two distinctly different types of dessert. One of them is candy like dessert made from tahini, and can be stored for a very long time. It is very popular in the Middle East, the Balkans, and other areas around the Mediterranean.

Semolina Halva

The other one is made from semolina (or flour), and should be consumed relatively shorter time. Semolina halva is a very common dessert in Turkey. (And I recenlty learned it is also a very common dessert in India).

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Talking Turkey: How Did the Turkey Get Its Name? (Giancarlo Casale)

Talking TurkeyYesterday I realized that I need to do some spring cleaning in my mailbox. I need to open space for new mails, and get rid of the garbage.

During the cleaning , I found this two years old mail. One of my friends sent it to me, and I must find it interesting to keep it. (or I was busy and simply said, ok, I will read it later, and then forgot)

It was one of those forward mails, someone read some interesting article and starts passing on to the others.

The article in the mail was about how the turkey got its name. I don’t know I long it was in the forwarding process before it got caught by my mailbox.

It was written by Giancarlo Casale, PhD. Giancarlo Casale is currently an assistant professor at the Department of History at the University of Minnesota.

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