tea in Turkey

Turkey has the highest per capita tea consumption in the world, at 2.5 kg per person—followed by the United Kingdom (2.1 kg per person). …

Tea is an important part of Turkish culture, and is the most commonly consumed hot drink, despite the country’s long history of coffee consumption. Offering tea to guests is part of Turkish hospitality. …

Turkish pizza – Pide

Any visitor will tell you Turkish cuisine  is one of the highlights.

Not me. I found it a bit bland. Predictable.

Restaurants all tend to have the same things on their menus. Similar ingredients are used in traditional meals.

One highlight for me, however, is Turkish Pizza.

 Pide is a flat-bread of a similar style to pita, chapati, or western pizza crust. A proper pide should be baked in a brick or other stone oven.
“stuffed” version

Over a week in Goreme I ate at Firin Express four times. Three times I had Turkish pizza (Pide). Once pizza pizza. Also excellent.

Once exception was the Nazik Ana restaurant in Bodrum. Popular with local workmen and police, it delivers typical Turkish food with a twist. And in a stylish, unique space.


Bodrum, Turkey

Lonely Planet:

Although more than a million tourists flock to its beaches, boutique hotels, trendy res- taurants and clubs each summer, Bodrum (ancient Halicarnassus) never seems to lose its cool. …

Built by the Knights Hospitaller in the 15th century, Bodrum Castle, overlooks the harbour and the marina. The castle grounds include a Museum of Underwater Archaeology …

Bodrum is OK but it was the least favourite of my stops in Turkey.

The castle and museum are over-priced and not particularly well maintained. This strikes me as a tourist trap with far too many tourists for the available space. Rats crowded into a small cage.

The very interesting Theatre of Halicarnassus is locked up. It should be a major attraction.

I finally found the Mausoleum of Mausolus, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. But it was closed.

My favourite place in Bodrum … Starbucks.

Turkish food – Testi

I met Rosie and Patrick from the U.K. while visiting the famed Outdoor Museum, a World Heritage site. A Byzantine monastic settlement, the monks had time to paint their caves.

We drank some wine at sunset point overlooking Göreme.

Then I recommended we go for a nice dinner — traditional Turkish food of this region called Testi.

A mixture of meat and vegetables cooked in a clay pot or jug over fire (testi means jug in Turkish). The pot is sealed with bread dough or foil and is broken when serving.

They were half way complete a cycling trip from England to China. Next up is Iran which they feel will be the best section of all.

Goal is to get home in time for Christmas.

travellers – Maude and Mikael

Maude (Quebec) and Mikael (Finland) met at my hostel in Antalya, Turkey. They decided to take a night bus to Göreme, Cappadocia. I invited myself along.

One night they had the crazy idea we barbecue in the hoodoos.

We walked over at dusk.

This was the very first eroded monument we had visited on arrival. Seemed an appropriate place to cook.

First … enjoy the sunset.

Next … try to get the fire going in a cave. (For all my hiking I’m still terrible at lighting campfires.)

It was a bit of a comedy. But eventually they had sausage, chicken skewers, onions and peppers cooking. We drank wine and some kind of horrible Finish liquor they use to interrogate prisoners.

Maude and Mikael headed to northern Turkey. But I really enjoyed the week we spent together. The three of us are all travellers at heart. Maude had given up everything at home to teach French in a mountain village in Morocco. Michael strikes me as an entrepreneur, traveling until he decides what business venture to launch. 

Turkish flat bread – Gözleme

Gözleme is a traditional savory Turkish flatbread and pastry dish, made of hand-rolled leaves of yufka dough that are lightly brushed with butter and eggs, filled with various toppings, sealed, and cooked over a griddle. …

Ladies at a hostel in Antalya hosted some sort of family reunion. They cooked Gözleme all day offering it to one and all passing by. Including the hostel guests.

I had a savoury version with cheese, spinach and meat. And a dessert version with honey.