Wednesday, April 27, 2011

tea or coffee?

One of the things I love about about living in Turkey is that there's no shortage of places to caffeinate oneself. From a çay that'll put hair on your chest, to a dark and silty kahve, you never have to look very far for a fix. In both hole-in-the-walls and chic restaurants, Turkish tea is typically served in elegant little tulip-shaped glasses, but you'll often see a man with two thermoses and a stack of small paper cups walking the streets bellowing "Çay!" I love this. I can get a spot of tea on the street for a lira and go about my business. Waiting for a bus? Have a çay! Feel like sitting in the park? Çay!

If tea isn't your thing, you might opt for a strong and muddy kahve. Rich in flavour and thick on your tongue, Turkish coffee is an acquired experience for some. If you can get past the texture, a dainty little cup of kahve is a real treat. Order it in one of either three ways: sade, orta or şekerli— sugarless, medium sweetness or sweet. I like mine somewhere in the middle. Sometimes, if you're lucky, you might get a cup that has been brewed with cardamom— this is more of a Middle Eastern thing and is not common in Turkey— but if you get the chance to try it, ooh you'd better give it a go. It's heavenly.


Nita said...

I love your posts about things in Turkey. Could you write something about Turkish ice cream? I just read that it's made from orchid roots, it's stretchy (?!) and that street vendors cut it with a knife.

Sounds fascinating!

szaza said...

Thank you, Nita!
Ah, dondurma— Turkish ice cream. It's truly unique. I will have to do a post on it soon. Right now it's still a bit cold for the dondurma stands, but hopefully in the next couple of weeks they'll start opening up.

omar said...

I love your pictures, I love your stories!

szaza said...

Thank you so much, Omar!
I am very happy to hear it :)