The Magic of Spices
March 25

Spices turn your dream meal into a masterpiece. So much so that the trace (impression) left by a spice touch is never forgotten. The masterpiece of care, enthusiasm you show for a meal or dessert is spice which is the detail where creativity is hidden. Contrary to those who say spice is the final touch, it is actually always the starting point. A properly used spice opens a different door in our memory for tastes. It adds character and excitement to our dishes with its beautiful scents and flavors while increasing curiosity, interest and passion for food. The journeys to the unknown stories of the dishes also begin with spices.

When some spices meet with other spices, their boosting effects increase. Some of them have specific dominant flavors; some have both the distinctive pleasantness and aromas that make all other flavors shine. Spices are one of the unique tastes offered by nature as much as the cultural element that creates the common taste among people is spices. The best spice always finds its way into the dish where it belongs. So, now let’s review the most used and traditional spices in Turkish cuisine:

1. Chili pepper The chili pepper, which is obtained from red pepper, whose seeds are removed and chopped after drying, leaves its mark on the dishes with its sharp touch. It is the crown jewel of bitter lovers in stuffed green peppers, meat dishes, kebabs, and legumes such as dried beans and chickpeas. In addition to bitter varieties, it is possible to come across varieties with sweet and oily flavors.

2. Black pepper As black pepper is the hero of all dishes of Turkish cuisine, it is used so intensely even only in rice that the first spice that comes to mind when it comes to “traditional and indispensable flavor” is black pepper. As a companion of salt, it is the most precious spice on our tables.

3. Mint Mint, which can be used in a wide range of flavors from olive oil dishes to soups, from sour dishes to tzatziki and lemonade, is one of the most intensely flavored spices. It gives coolness to salads in fresh form; mint tea is the most beautiful source of health and can be consumed in all seasons of the year.

4. Cumin Cumin, which can be brewed as tea as well as used in meals cooked in the oven with granular form. Bringing the pleasure of eating to its peak with the hot and soft tastes, it adds to tomato-based, hot, sour and peppery dishes in powder form. Cumin cannot be considered separately from cheese types, meat dishes, soups and lentil dishes.

5. Thyme Thyme, the inseparable spice of olive oil, is the best gift given by the Mediterranean basin. With its different types and impressive tastes, it leaves its unique flavor to pastas, cheeses, grills, meat and vegetable recipes.