There’s a place right on college avenue that serves up traditional Turkish food.  This place is called Penn Kebab and it offers a wide variety of dishes that may overwhelm anyone.  There are so many choices that look unfamiliar to at least me, I struggled with what to pick until I ultimately went with the vegetarian platter.  Overall the food was rich in flavor and I enjoyed it, the only drawback of the place was that they didn’t accept lioncash (so I had to fund this one).

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Turkish food is a unique cuisine is influenced by many different nations around it and also a lasting influence on other nations.  The cuisine began with the Ottoman Empire which was comprised of Central Asian, Caucasian, Middle Eastern, Mediterranean, and Balkan cultures.  This led to the different types of influences on Turkish food and also explains for difference in regional food.

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There are many foods that are staples of the Turkish diet.  The meats most commonly consumed are chicken, beef, fish and lamb (was once shunned but is now widely consumed).  Also fruit is very available is cheap throughout Turkey leading to great variety in the different types used.  In traditional Ottoman cuisine fruit is served as a side dish to the meat dish.  Typical fruits used are plums, apricots, pomegranates,  pears, apples, grapes and figs.  Nuts are also very important, especially pistachio, chestnuts, almonds, hazelnuts and walnuts.  The nuts are essential to Turkish desserts but are also commonly eaten by themselves.  Yogurt is another common ingredient (the english word for yogurt comes from the Turkish word yoğurt).  

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There are many staple dishes of Turkish food.  Perhaps the most popular is the kebab.  Surprisingly Turkish kebabs are not only grilled or skewered meats but also include casseroles and stews.  The most popular dessert item of Turkish food is baklava which is made with either pistachios or walnuts.  There is also many different varieties of baklavas.

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Fun Facts

Turks enjoy black tea all day long which is made with two teapots in which strong bitter tea is made in the top one and then diluted by adding boiling water from the lower pot

Turkish people almost always drink some soup at the beginning of their meals, even at breakfast

The dessert Tavukgogsu is unique because it contains chicken



2 thoughts on “Turkish

  1. Wow, this food looks so good! I have had Baklava before and it is delicious. I really love this blog. I love how you give a little bit of history, local food facts, and then fun facts. It is so interesting seeing how other cultures eat. It takes you out of your bubble!

  2. I love the general flavor combinations of middle Eastern food in general, so I’m going to have to go check this place out! A lot of time I can’t have the baklava people make because I’m allergic to walnuts, but I’ve had it with pistachios ONCE, and it was HEAVENLY. Hope to go get a taste of this stuff soon 🙂

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