Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Turkish Style Bruschettas with Cheese and Parsley

I love my people.

Every time I come to Istanbul, I come to realise this once again. Something heartwarming a friend does, an impatient gesture I spotted in the street or an unavoidably catchy melody from a street musician remind me of how much I am in love with this country and its people. The list of possible reasons for my ever-bursting love for Turkish people is a pretty long one, for sure. However, here comes the latest one I've come to realise: Their unpredictable creativity bursts. 

Let me explain it briefly. If you are a guest in a Turkish house for breakfast, for instance, get ready for surprises even when your visit itself is an unplanned one! The host immediately turns into a rare-to-find imaginative chef using every bit of food within the walls of the house. They surprise you with combinations that you have never thought of before. You never know what you will be served although you know where the person is from. Since I am familiar to the traditions and customs in Turkey and know that another surprise might be waiting for you, I am always on the watch for another local way of bringing different kinds of fruit and vegetables using different cooking techniques. 

The last surprise came during my visit to a very close friend of mine's place a few days ago. While traditional breakfast food such as (at least 2) different kinds of cheese, olives, jam and/or marmelade, honey, tomatoes and cucumbers were arranged on the table, another friend of mine suggested preparing 'bread slices with cheese and parsley'. That's how she calls them and how her late grandma used to. The host immediately got what her guest had in mind and rummaged in the fridge and a bit of this and a bit of that followed. And after 10 minutes 'Abrakadabra!' She pulled a hot baking pan from the oven full of Turkish style bruschettas with cheese and parsley. The water-mouthing slices were so appetizing that I devoured half of the pan as the cheese monster at the breakfast table. 

By the way, the basic difference between Turkish style bruschettas and the traditional Italian ones is that you skip the step of basically grilling the bread after rubbing it with garlic and olive oil. Instead, butter is used to flavour the bread first and it is baked with the topping on letting the cheese mixture melt and get golden brown. 

5-6 slices rye or wholemeal bread
3 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
100 grams freshly grated semi-hard cheese
parsley, chopped roughly
1 egg
vegetable oil for grasing the baking pan

1. Lightly grease a baking pan with vegetable oil.
2. Slice a rye or wholemeal bread into one-centimetre-thick slices.
3. Spread butter onto the slices and arrange the slices on the pan.
3. In a medium bowl, stir an egg with a fork. Add in the cheese and parsley. Stir until all blended.
4. Spread the mixture onto the buttered slices. Be genereous.
5. Bake at 200°C for 10-15 minutes until the cheese melts and the bread gets golden brown. 

No comments:

Post a Comment