Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Book Review : Aegean Flavours

Next month, myself and The Hubs are off on a holiday to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary.  A whole decade - I know, I can't quite believe it myself. We're actually going on a cruise and made sure that it went to places that neither of us had ever been before.  So we're off to Italy, Greece, Turkey and Croatia. Actually, The Hubs has been to Turkey before : with the lads some 16 years ago but that was spent on Bar Street eating dodgy food and drinking even dodgier food, so this is going to be a whole new world for him!.

I was recently sent a cookery book about Turkish cuisine and I was intrigued. Written by Didem Şenol Tiryakioğlu, it has a lovely recommendation from Yotam Ottolenghi on the cover.  Could Turkish be the new Lebanese?  I think it could.  I particularly love how Didem writes her recipes, almost as if she's describing them to you in a conversational manner and the sequence flows so naturally.  She also advises the most sensible way to get a recipe right : taste the food at every stage so you don't under or over season the dish.

The book is centred around 11 Aegean markets that she visits, with specialities from each region including lamb (hot smoked lamb loins with mustard sauce and caramelised onion from Muğla), fish (monkfish with green apple and fennel from Milas), soup (cauliflower soup with caramelised pear from Alaçatı Ödemiş) and desserts (hazelnut cake with warm chocolate sauce from Urla).  The photographs also tell a tale, with great images of each market prefacing each chapter and making the recipes come alive.  It's impossible to read this book without thinking "I'd like to eat that, and that, and that too".

Aegean Flavours by Didem Şenol Tiryakioğlu is published by Jacqui Small Publishing & is available now.  Twitter : @JacquiSmallPub

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