During one of my trips to Konya, Nevin Halici took me back into the kitchens of some of the best restaurants. We then dined with the Mevlevi dervishes and got to sample all the dishes made with exotic ingredients. Nevin is one of the most beloved cookbook authors of Turkey.
Below are a few photos of her cookbook, Nevin Halici’s Turkish Cookbook, and one of my favorite recipes, Şaştım Aşı.
“…if some day you find yourself in Konya, please do not hestitate to call on me. As benefits an Anatolian, there will always be a şaştım aşı which I can prepare for you in my kitchen with the greatest pleasure throughout the four seasons.
Are you wondering what would follow? No doubt there would be Turkish coffee prepared over a charcoal brazier accompanied by lokum to complement the şaştım aşı.”
-Nevin Halici, Nevin Halici’s Turkish Cookbook
- 5 oz courgettes
- 5 oz aubergines
- 5 oz thin green peppers
- 8 oz ripe tomatoes
- 2 oz onions
- 2 fl oz olive oil
- 1 tsp tomato purée
- 3.5 fl oz water
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp caster sugar
- 1 quantity of yoghurt and garlic sauce*
- GARNISH 1 tsp haspir (saffron)
- Peel and quarter the courgettes & aubergines. Sprinkle with salt, leave for 20 minutes, wash and drain.
- Cut pepper into equal lengths, discard seeds. Peel and chop tomatoes.
- Chop the onions and fry in oil for 2-3 minutes.
- Add the tomato purée, then courgettes, aubergines and peppers and stir-fry for 2-3 minutes.
- Add the chopped tomatoes, stir for 1 minute, then add the water.
- Add salt and sugar, cover and cook for 15-20 minutes.
- Prepare yoghurt and garlic sauce.*
- Mix half of the yoghurt sauce in with the warm vegetables and transfer to a serving dish.
- Top dishes with the remainder of the yoghurt sauce. Garnish with saffron.
*Nevin Halici’s version of Yoghurt and Garlic sauce can be found in her book. One simple version: crush garlic (2-3 cloves for ½ a quart, add to taste) and combine with yogurt, salt to taste.