Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Acma (Turkish Bagel)

I'd like to start with a question: Do you like bagels? If you do, try to cook a Turkish style bagel, namely Acma (it is read as "achma"). Actually, acma is a little bit different from a bagel but I think bagel is the most appropriate word that can describe acma. My mom bakes acma so nice that every time she has guests, acma is one of the most popular foods among the guests :) Now, I'm living far far away from my mom, so it is time to bake acma by myself.

My first try was not that good because I make the dough wait too long :( But every bad experience teaches you something good. So, my second try was good and tastes almost like my mom's acma :) My guests also like it, and now they always ask me to bake some acma when I invite them to my house. Here is the recipe:


1 1/2 cup warm-hot milk
1 1/2 tbs dry baking yeast
1/2 cup warm water
1/2 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil (I prefer canola oil) (2/3 cups for dough)
1 egg (separate yolk from the white)
1 tea spoon salt
4-6 cups of all purpose (or bread) flour
1 tbs oil
2 tbs black cumin


Pour warm-hot water into a large bowl. The water should be between hot that when you put your fingers you should be able to bear with it. Add the sugar and yeast and stir it with your fingers or with a spoon that is made of wood for just 5-6 seconds. Wait for about 5-6 minutes. during this time the yeast will grow. Add the milk, white of the egg, 2/3 cups of oil and salt, and mix them. Then add some flour until your fingers can separate from the dough. But still some of the dough should remain on your finger. I mean the dough should be thick but it still needs to be sticky. This is the thickness that we want. I don't give the exact measurement because the amount of flour that is enough for our dough changes with the brand of the flour. But I usually begin with pouring 3 1/2 cups of flour, and add 1/2 cups each time if I need more flour. You should use your fingers to feel the correct thickness.

Then cover the bowl with a damp kitchen towel or with the bowl's cover if it has :) Wait until the dough rises and doubled in volume. Grease the pan or use baking shhets. Put the remaining (1/3 cups) oil into a plate. Grease your hand with this oil and take some dough that is as big as your hand. Make a long cylindrical dough like you are making a bagel. Then twist this cylindrical dough and wrap it around your hand until the two sides mashed. Put it on the pan. Do the same procedure until you use the entire dough.

Now mix the yolk of the egg and 1 tbs oil and brush acmas with these mixture. Be generous and brush all the surface of acmas that is seen from outside. Sprinkle black cumins or sesame seeds and bake them in a prehetaed oven. The temperature should be 380F~400F. When the tops become brownish take acmas out oven and let them cool. That's it, enjoy!

Monday, August 20, 2007

Nisasta Kurabiyesi (Starch Cookies)

I made these cookies for the foodie blog event between Turkish food bloggers. These cookies have a funny story. I ate these cookie in my sister's house. Every summer, my sister cooks these cookies and we eat them during the tea-cookie time (5pm is the traditional tea-cookie time in Turkey :) ). Then, when our friend announced the May's event as a cookie event, these starch cookies are the only ones that I wanted to cook.

Thanks God, I cook them like my sister. Both the appearance and the taste are exactly the same. I don't know the name of the cookies so I just entitled it as starch cookies. After I posted the recipe, my aunt called me and told me the real name of these cookies: wife silencer or mother in law silencer :)))) The reason is that if you try to eat these cookies alone, without coffee or tea or anything liquid, you might be choked because of the starch. You know the contention between the bride and the mother in law is classic in almost every culture. So, the brides that want their mother in laws to be shut up, they can cook these cookies and serve them without any drink :) Of course it is just a small joke, but who knows may be one day you need something like that, huh?

2 sticks unsweetened butter
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 all purpose flour
1 package of baking powder
3-4 cups corn starch


1. Butter should be at room temperature, so take them out of the refrigerator at least 1/2 hours before starting. Mix butter and powdered sugar in a large bowl.

2. Break the eggs into butter-sugar mixture and mix them.

3. Add flour and baking powder, and mix.

4. First add 2 cups of starch. Then add 1/2 cups each time until you get a cookie dough that is not sticky. To understand if the starch is enough, take a small pieces of dough into your hand. If dough does not stick to your hand, it means your dough is ready.

5. Take small pieces into your hand at a size of golf ball. Roll up between the palms of your hands and make balls.

6. Lay baking sheets and put the balls onto the sheet.

7. Cook them in the preheated oven (330F) until their surface become pink.

8. Serve them cool with a coffee or tea. Don't forget the drink, otherwise you couldn't be able to swallow even a bite :)


Monday, August 13, 2007

Turkish Night

Hi everyone!

I just would like to let you all know that I will have a "Turkish Night" event in my Turkish cooking blog on 30 August 07. After that day I am going to carry all the delicious Turkish food here in English.
So you can check many pictures and recipes from here.
What do you have to do? It is very simple only come over on 1st of September and enjoy our "Turkish Night".

And also there would be a small tour of my country I will add photos of our famous places, our restaurants and some shopping places and also one of our Turkish music which is adapted into many language. :)

I hope everything goes well and we can meet here. If you have some Turkish recipe you are welcome to share it with us by sending it to yamantarifler@gmail.com

Please don't miss the Turkish Night!

Monday, August 6, 2007

Food in Film: Chicken Sandwich and Cherry Dessert

There is a lovely event at the well-seasoned cook by Susan. When I saw the announcement I thought we should join the event "Food in Film".
I chose two movies and two recipes for this event. I made a delicious chicken sandwich for "Big Night" (above) and cherry dessert for "Woman on Top" (below). I hope you enjoy them!

The first movie is "Big Night". It is a lovely comedy-drama and also a yummy foodie movie. It is about two Italian brothers. They own an Italian restaurant called "Paradise". Their restaurant's popularity is going down so they tried to make a big come back again by throwing a big party. Definitely worth watching!!

Here are the recipes for Italian flat bread Focaccia and chicken sandwich! Che bello!Muahh! :)

  • 2 packages (5 teaspoons) of active dry yeast
  • 1 3\4 cups warm water (105-115 F)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 3\4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 5 cups all purpose flour, plus extra for kneading
  • 2 teaspoons fine sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon coarse sea salt (optional)
  1. In a large bowl, dissolve the yeast in the warm water and let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the sugar, 1\2 cup of the olive oil, the flour, and the fine sea salt and stir with your hand or a wooden spoon until a rough ball forms.
  3. pour the dough out onto a floured work surface and knead the dough until smooth and elastic, 5-7 minutes.
  4. Add up to 1\2 cup flour to the work surface while kneading to prevent the dough from sticking.
  5. Form the dough into a ball, transfer it to a lightly oiled bowl, and cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Let the dough rise in a warm, draft- free spot until it doubles in bulk, 1-11\2 hours.
  6. Pour the remaining 1\4 cup oil evenly into a half-sheet pan. Turn the dough out into the pan. Press the dough evenly into the pan. If it is too elastic to spread without springing back, let it rest for 5 minutes. Cover the pan loosely with a dry kitchen towel. Let the dough rise in a warm, draft-free spot until it doubles in size, about 1 hour.
  7. Position a rack in the lower third of the oven, and preheat to 450F. Dimple the dough by pressing your fingertips all the way into it a 1 inch intervals over the entire surface. Sprinkle it with the coarse salt, if desired.
  8. Bake the focaccia until golden brown, 20-30 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool in the pan. Cut it into squares and serve warm or at room temperature. Store tightly wrapped in a aluminum foil at room temperature for up to 1 day or freeze fpr up to 2 weeks. Reheat at 375F for 10 minutes.
The Focaccia recipe is from my first baking book Williams-Sonoma (Essentials of baking). I totally love this cooking book. I don't remember how many recipes I tried and fell in love with.

Chicken Sandwich
  • 2 boneless, skinned chicken breasts
  • ~ 1 1\2 cup fine chopped cabbage
  • ~ 1 1\2 cup grated carrot
  • 1 cup plain Yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 grated garlic
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • A little bit salt and black pepper


  1. In a frying pan, fry the chicken breasts with butter until cooked well and slice them thin.
  2. In a large bowl, put the cabbage, carrot, yogurt, mayonnaise, garlic, salt and pepper mix them well.
  3. Cut the focaccia into four-inch squares. Then split them in two and put the chicken and salad between them. Serve with Big Night movie. :))
The second movie is "Woman on Top".
Isabelle (Penelope Cruz) is a beautiful girl who has a talented for cooking but she is also a control freak. She needs to control everything and if she is not in control like cars, elevators, planes she gets ill. Her target is become the top chef in a famous restaurant but when she falls in love with Toninho her mind changes. When Toninho cheats on her she leaves him and moves to San Fransisco to become the chef that she has always dreamed of.

I decided to make a dessert that would go with the movie.I put all the cherry , chocolate, coconut on the top of my dessert. :))

  • 1 package cherry pudding (I used strawberry pudding)
  • 3,5 cups milk
  • 1 1\2 package plain biscuit (tea biscuit)
  • For toping decoration; a half pound cherry, 2 tablespoons coconut, 1\2 cup chocolate chips

In a sauce pan, cook the pudding according to package directions with 3,5 cups.
Place the biscuits side by side on bottom of 8x8 inch pan. And than pour 1\3 pudding on the top of biscuit. Continue to make the dessert until you finish all the biscuits and the pudding. Let the dessert cool and than put it in refrigerator.