Downstairs in the Istanbul Modern there is a saying literally written on the wall. To my own despair I cannot remember the exact phrasing, but it goes a little something like this: With your first glimpse of the city you realize how very special the East truly is. I agree completely.
My first sight of anything other than African Soil was the city lights of Istanbul at night and what a sight it was.
Now that I have spent a little more time in Turkey and more soon to be experienced I have added it to my top ten places that I now enjoy.
But more about the food.
In Cape Town, my first experience with Kataifi pastry came via Mike Bassett and his Kataifi wrapped prawns. I would be lying if I didn’t admit to damning the pastry a few times since it dries out so very quickly while you are trying to wrap a hundred odd prawns at a time.
But this creation has nothing on the pistachio kataifi baskets with their crisp honey crunch.
There’s something so different about these pastries (besides the obvious). The very little sugar that is used in the making of the items makes it so much easier to want to try everything and not go into a sugar induced coma.
Then there are the Turkish Delights that come in more flavors than they do colors. They have a chewy side to them that I really do love. The shop bought ones and the ones we used to make at home just can’t compare with their softness.
If you are ever in Istanbul, try out both at Hafiz Mustafa. I stopped in there with Lisa from Do You Speak Cilantro. Open since 1864 they’ve got it down! Don’t forget to check out her blog either for a look at her own travel experiences.