amy chaplin

celebrating the art of eating well


POSTED ON September 30, 2011

fresh figs

Here are a few pictures from my recent trip to Turkey, very hard to choose photos that show just how rich and beautiful the country is. When I stepped off the plane at Istanbul airport and took my first breath, I knew I would love the city. What I didn’t know was how beautiful and untouched the south west coast is and how much I would like exploring by boat. Sleeping on deck under the full moon in secluded bays and listening to wild goats on the surrounding rocky headlands was just what I needed!

But first there were 5 amazing days in Istanbul.

outside our hotel/apartment in Galata

entering the Grand Bazaar

cat under chair

I loved this peaceful little courtyard, we came across it following a rug seller to his warehouse.

In the Bazaar we spent hours talking to antique watch sellers, jewelers and towel specialists. I loved the way tea would appear on a tray as if out of nowhere and be handed out in shaply glasses with bright saucers. After many  glasses we pulled ourselves out and walked through winding streets to the spice market.

empty tea glasses on the street

dried fruits stuffed with nuts at spice market

Turkish delight

Turkish delight made with honey

drawers of spices and teas

button shop

mosque by Istanbul Modern

street in Kababöy

Turkish coffee (and more tea) with a friend in Osküdar on the asian side of the city

quiet shady street in Osküdar

The day I spent on the Asian side of Istanbul was one of the most interesting and inspiring, eating breakfast (with fresh pomegranate juice!) at a local cafe on the Bosphorus, walking the peaceful streets and then discovering çiya. çiya, a restaurant  in the midst of a market that sells everything from olives and vegetables to fish, sweets and herbs. The chef, Musa Dagdeviren owns three restaurants all in a row, I ate at çiya Sofrasy. The food at this branch is based on traditional cuisines of eastern and southeastern Anatolia. The chef is a food historian using regional herbs and vegetables I have never heard of and creating hundreds of delicious vegetarian dishes from almost forgotten peasant recipes. There is so much to learn from his cooking, the meal I ate there was one that will stay with me for a long time. Thank you Sila!

dried stuffed eggplant, yogurt with wheat berries and delicious greens

the best lentil soup and more delicious grains and vegetables

more figs layer with fig leaves at the market in Kadikoy

view from Aya Sofra

street in Beyoğlu

I loved exploring Beyoğlu, especially the antique shops with their wares pouring out onto the winding cobblestone streets. On our last night we ate at Mücver, a tiny restaurant that serves simple traditional Turkish home cooking. it was the perfect soothing meal to end our last day in Istanbul.

Pictures from the boat to follow!

POSTED IN travel

TAGGED UNDER: travel, turkey

never miss a recipe!


Leave a Reply