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Frenchie and Leaving Boston

16 Apr

This is it!

The time has come to leave Boston.

So many people met, places visited, dishes made.

Experiences and inspirations.

After all, Frenchie and the Yankee was born in Boston – in September 2010!

And it is with a very heavy heart that I am writing this post thinking about the Boston Marathon tragedy from yesterday, which took place just 1 mile (1.5 km) away from my house.

Thinking of all those families affected by these events.

Feeling sad to leave the city, friends, neighborhoods still under shock.

The city I have called home for the past 4.5 years.

“But life here will go on. We won’t be paralyzed by fear.

We’ll take reasonable precautions, yes.

But we won’t take cover.

And we won’t cower.

This, after all, is Boston.”

“Mais ici, la vie va continuer. Nous ne nous laisserons pas paralyser par la peur.

Certes, nous prendrons toutes les précautions qui s’imposent.

Mais nous ne nous cacherons pas.

Nous ne tremblerons pas.

Après tout, ici, c’est Boston.”

Scot Lehigh – The Boston Globe

As I look outside my window, wondering what Charlotte, NC is going to bring into my life, I think about the city of Boston, the region of New England, and a few of my favorite things

Here’s a potpourri of favorite photos, places, experiences and food.

20- Looking down to see my feet treading upon the beautiful red brick sidewalks.

19- Sitting down to rest on a hot summer afternoon and hear the Spanish guitar player inside the Boston Library courtyard with fountain noises echoing throughout.

18- Union Park in the South End and turning the corner on Shawmut Ave to go to Formaggio’s buy local New England cheeses.

17- Spending the day in Charlestown, taking a water shuttle back to the Boston Wharfs as the city shines over the water.

16- A day trip to Gloucester and Cape Ann with a dinner at The Market.

15- Exploring the many small Italian food stores in the North End – a cheese sample here, a prosciutto tasting there.

14- Imagining the inside of the beautiful townhouses of Beacon Hill from Mount Vernon Street to W. Cedar Street.

13- Buying local and seasonal groceries at the SoWa Market.

12- Admiring the colorful spring tulips on a bench in the Boston Garden.

11- Spending an afternoon in Marblehead, MA browsing for antiques or in Provincetown, MA walking up and down Commercial Street.

10- Hearing the excitedly anxious sounds and voices of students on Harvard Yard as a new school year starts.

9- Strolling on the Longfellow Bridge, along the Charles River, and back through the Mass Ave Bridge with stunning views of the city.

8- The seasons – fall and spring in particular. Apple picking at the Russell Orchards Farm. Photographing trees at the Mount Auburn Cemetery.

7- Restaurants, eateries and food places discovered along the way. La Voile, Grotto, Toro, Metropolis Café, Craigie on Main, Maurizio’s, Coppa, Erbaluce, Oishii, Lala Rokh, B&G Oysters.

6- Sitting down on a wooden bench inside Trinity Church – sealed from the outside world and taking in the unique atmosphere of this particular church.

5- Taking a quick special drive to Tatte Bakery in Cambridge – a delicious experience!

4- Buying the most unusual fruits and veggies at the Chinatown supermarkets after eating dim sum at the Empire Garden or Myers + Chang.

3- Looking up at the beautiful ceiling inside Faneuil Hall.

2- Walking through Bay Village as the old gas lamp posts magically light up the small streets at dusk like a movie set.

1- Meeting Bostonians along the years, proud of their city and its History.

So long Boston.

Until the next weekend visit.

Ready for Charlotte, NC and how it will influence this blog.

Merci Boston !

Frenchie and Puerto Vallarta

2 Apr

For a first time in Mexico, Puerto Vallarta proved to be everything I had expected.

Warm, colorful, charming and artistic.

From sunrise to sunset, the city exuded a calm and peaceful grace.

Oh and those sunsets! How could I forget them?

Alternating between old town and new town, oceanside and mountain terrain, Puerto Vallarta was everything I had pictured and imagined.

And for a first time in Mexico, it was perfect.

My Mexican friends always told me they couldn’t believe I had never gone south of the border.

My French friends just shoulder-shrugged along with a big eye roll – Quoi ? You’ve never been to Mexico?

The proximity of the country gave me no excuse.

And as I was leaving Puerto Vallarta driving to the remote mountain town of San Sebastián del Oeste, cruising on the winding roads of the Sierra Madre, climbing up and reaching new heights at 4,800 feet (1,460 m) – I thought to myself… why did I wait so long to come here?

Smells of mountainous dusty roads and green leafy trees slowing moving with the crisp air moving through.

Corsican memories coming back with wild herbs and pine-oak scents floating around and rushing through the rolled down car windows.

Hawks circling under the bright sun.

The greenish and blueish tint of the agave plants in the sun easily attract the eye.

The coffee roasting in the sun with its strong aroma released for all to enjoy while touring a coffee plantation.

Lemon and grapefruit trees with heavy branches, ready to be harvested.

Cows running through the cobblestone streets followed by what seemed to be the smallest shepherd dog with the loudest bark.

And they all obeyed the tiny dog while passing older gentlemen with straw cowboy hats resting in the shade of the church.

It is always interesting to find and eat lunch in what appears to be someone’s house.

A tiny restaurant with 2 tables. Staircase going up to the bedrooms. Some local products in display to purchase.

And la señora making food in her kitchen while her husband takes orders.

The flipping noises of the soft tortilla dough balls exchanged from one hand to the other in a slapping sound.

The clinging metal press used over and over to flatten fresh thin tortillas.

Listening attentively to the sounds of food being prepared away from customers’ eyes – I almost didn’t hear the host dropping a bowl of fresh salsa on the table with a cuidado that could only mean one thing: spicy!

The streets of old Puerto Vallarta offered the best adventures and discoveries.

Watching women make quesadillas and juices.

Tasting tequila from the small shack shop next to the bus stop and around the corner from the abandoned rusty truck.

Dipping my finger in honey samples made locally.

And stopping for a bite at the tortilleria.

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Eating lunch at the Ocean Grill restaurant is an experience of its own.

A bus ride to Boca de Tomatlán, a water taxi to the restaurant, cliffs and oceanside views, a pristine cove and delicious food.

The octopus dish was by itself a good enough reason to travel to Ocean Grill.

The secluded cove accessible only by boat looked like a movie set or something created by computer technology.

You can find it all in Puerto Vallarta.

The modern and the old.

The tourists and isolated neighborhoods.

The beach restaurants targeting foreigners.

As well as the small food places barely lit at night attracting local residents for a fun meal amongst friends.

The city allowed for my many food guilty pleasures.

Sampling fresh fruit and seafood at the food stalls.

Coconuts, melons, mangoes, oranges.

Ordering a taco to go and a freshly pressed fruit juice.

Picking out chocolate truffles made locally at Xocodiva.

Picking out samples of chorizo to try on the spot.

Smelling the bubbling pots and pans with meats and stews at street corners.

The experience at El Mole de Jovita where the black bean dip is slowly mixed with mole poured from a hot dish meticulously stirred and guarded outside for all to see was exquisite.

I could also tell you about the outdoor dinning experience at the Vista Grill with stunning views of the city and a seared tuna paired with eggplant cakes that I cannot forget.

Oh and a passion fruit crème brûlée – exoticism paired with a French classic.

It wasn’t surprising that I wanted to make inspired food from this Mexico trip after landing back in Boston.

Colors from the trip.

Flavors and fragrances.

Ingredients noted along the way.

And a celebration of spring.

I wanted something easy to make and even easier to eat.

Something I could picture myself eat on the terrace of beautiful and secluded Villa Savana overlooking the city, reminiscing about a successful vacation.

A unique place worth a stay!

Fresh with cucumbers, green with avocados, creamy with Mexican cheese and colorful with hints of pink and purple.

A small verrine – not too much.

Reenergized, inspired and ready to tackle the Big Move.

Happy to finally come back with Mexican memories and delicious thoughts about a week spent in Puerto Vallarta.

Happy Spring and happy gazpacho!

Creamy Avocado Gazpacho Verrines with Smoked Salmon

4 seedless Persian cucumbers – sliced

3 ripe avocados – pitted, peeled and cubed

4 scallions – green and white parts – sliced

1 celery talk – sliced

0.5 Granny Smith apple – chopped

0.5 green pepper – sliced

2 garlic cloves – minced

2-3 Tbsp of chopped flat-leaf parsley

2-3 Tbsp of chopped cilantro

1.5 cup (355 ml) of water

1.5 Tbsp of sherry vinegar

1 Tbsp of olive oil (plus more for drizzling)

1.5 teaspoon of sea salt

freshly ground pepper

1 teaspoon of ground coriander

3 oz (85 g) of queso fresco – Mexican cheese – crumbled (plus more for assembling the verrines)

juice of 1 lemon

juice of 1 lime

2 oz (55 g) of smoked salmon – sliced

red amaranth microgreens

In a blender, mix and purée all ingredients together except the salmon and microgreens.

Taste for seasoning. Add more salt if needed.

Variations: omit the cheese if you are lactose intolerant. Remove the lime if you don’t enjoy sour. Add more water if too creamy/thick. Remove the salmon as a vegetarian option.

Set aside in a big container in the fridge to cool.

When ready to serve, prepare small glasses or verrines with smoked salmon at the bottom. Pour the gazpacho over it and top with a drizzle of olive oil, crumbles of queso fresco and a handful of red amaranth microgreens.

If you really like salmon, top the verrines with more salmon.

Frenchie and the Blizzard

11 Feb

The blizzard that everyone was waiting for.

A more than honorable snow coat reminding me of past Wisconsin winters.

And when it’s cold outside as the freshly dropped snowflakes sting your face like tiny bees carried out by the blizzard winds, home is where warmth makes everything better.

A honey roasted chicken.

A lemon sauce.

A home-made cumin butter to spread on a crusty bread.

And frozen lingonberries to use for a dessert.

Envious of those kids dragged by mum and dad in a shiny blue and green sledge.

My black boots now completely buried in a white mountain of icing sugar.

My knees cold from being encased.

But smiling and blinded by the white sharp light emanating from the reflection of the sun.

Memories of ending up knee-deep in the sand at the beach during the summer months.

Different season. Different scenery. Same feeling.

This post and recipe are dedicated to my friends “F. & O.” who got engaged in the snow amid this blizzard in the Boston park. 

Félicitations !

A snow storm to remember.

Lemon Zest and Almond Financiers with Lingonberries and Chia Seeds

makes about 22 small financiers

6 Tbsp (85 g) of butter – melted

4 Tbsp of teff flour

2 Tbsp of quinoa flour

1/2 cup (100 g) of blonde cane sugar

1.5 teaspoon of chia seeds

a dash of ground nutmeg

a pinch of sea salt

3/4 cup (93 g) of ground sliced almonds

3 organic lemons – finely zested

4 egg whites

1/4 teaspoon of vanilla extract

4 Tbsp of lingonberries

Preheat the oven to 375 °F (190 °C).

Prepare a mini-muffin pan with cooking spray.

In a small saucepan, melt the butter and set aside to cool.

In a medium bowl, sift and mix the flours, the sugar , the chia seeds, the nutmeg and sea salt. Combine.

In a food processor, finely ground the almonds. Fold with the flour mixture.

Add  the lemon zest. Mix delicately and make sure the zest does not clump.

Beat the egg whites and the vanilla extract with a fork until combined and lightly foamy.

Pour the egg whites over the flour mixture and stir.

Pour the melted butter and stir delicately until it is all absorbed.

Divide the batter in the mini-muffin pan. Top each financier with lingonberries. With the back of a spoon, press on the berries gently.

Bake in the oven for 14 minutes or until a toothpick comes out dry.

Remove the financiers from the pan right away and let them cool on a rack or a cutting board.

Frenchie and Los Angeles

4 Feb

Los Angeles as it has been described to me so many times before is a love-it-or-hate-it city.

Most comments and descriptive remarks I hear about L.A. tend to be negative overall – at least in my experience.

I happen to fall in the other category of people – I love it!

This time I got to stay in and experience the Los Feliz, Silver Lake, Little Armenia areas.

A radical shift from the most popular and touristy neighborhoods.

There is something about the city that makes me happy and smile.

It’s not the sun nor the weather.

It’s not the eclectic mood that resonates through the city either.

Its diversity.

Its liveliness.

The picturesque aspect of its undeniable allure.

Scenic it is!

And this is what makes me want to come back every single time.

The artsy and bohemian-like Los Feliz was a perfect new stop for me to discover.

A walkable area – I know, hard to believe in L.A.! – with hints of a moody Brooklyn, NY meets Italian tile roofs and Art Deco meets Adobe style homes.

Alluring yet still a bit scrappy.

Wonderfully luxurious yet very much bobo.

A sense of community in a city that sprawls across 469 square miles (1,215 km2).

And to fight the Boston winter blues, a fresh salad to remember coastal L.A.

Bursts of flavors with Balti seasoning, currants and a drizzled citrusy vinaigrette.

A salad to keep sunny memories alive until the next visit.

Zucchini Ribbon Salad with Toasted Pumpkin Seeds and Currants

serves 4

for the vinaigrette

1 Tbsp of olive oil

2 Tbsp of grapeseed oil

1 teaspoon of Champagne vinegar

zest and juice of half an organic lime

1 teaspoon of honey

half to 1 teaspoon of mustard

sea salt / pepper

a sprinkle of ground coriander

for the salad

4 Tbsp of pumpkin seeds

1 Tbsp of olive oil

1 Tbsp of Balti spice or seasoning

2 green zucchini – thinly sliced like ribbons

2 yellow zucchini – thinly sliced like ribbons

4.5 oz (127 g) of Gruyère – thinly sliced

2-3 Tbsp of Zante currants

2 Tbsp of flat-leaf parsley – chopped

In a medium bowl, mix all the ingredients for the vinaigrette. Whisk until the emulsion thickens.

In a small bowl, mix the pumpkin seeds with the olive oil and the Balti spice until well coated.

In a small hot pan over medium heat, toast the pumpkin seeds until “noisy” – 2-3 minutes. When you hear them pop, put them back in the bowl and let cool.

Arrange the zucchini slices on a plate with the Gruyère slices.

Sprinkle the currants, parsley and the cold toasted pumpkin seeds.

Drizzle the vinaigrette on top and serve.

Frenchie and 2012

1 Jan

A new year, a new calendar.

January 1st is my day to browse through the year that just ended.

Looking back and flipping the pages of a busy schedule that went by too quickly.

Finding forgotten pictures.

Remembering events marked down on the calendar.

Oh oui, I did this back in April!

Oh and I forgot about this dinner party… complètement oublié !

A look-back at 2012 with some of the pictures readers seemed to like most.

2012 started in Paris for me. New Year’s Eve with family.

Discovering Cobéa and its wonderful creations.

Exploring new bakeries. Falling in love with Au Petit Versailles du Marais.

Spring in Boston is always an event.

Marblehead, Wellesley, Cape Cod.

The changing of the trees, the new light.

A nomination for a BostInno Insider Award.

Coconut, chocolate, and dried cherry teacakes with tarragon.

Or Asian basil béchamel Mac and Cheese with truffle oil flavors and blackened chicken.

Food imparted by experiences, landscapes and cultural experiments.

A spring trip to Napa Valley and San Francisco, CA for a wedding.

Celebrating at Garibaldi’s, wishing a dear friend a happy married life and eating Le Frenchie Burger - specially created by Chef John Beardsley.

The wine, tapas and view at Ram’s Gate. A delight for the mouth and eyes.

The drive up to Pride Mountain Vineyards around the valley, through the trees, winding up and down.

A lunch at Bar Bocce across the bay from San Francisco, on the beach, with friends and a fire pit.

Spain came right after California. A second wedding.

Driving through the Costa Blanca, little towns and villages along a shiny coastline.

Loosing yourself in Barcelona in search for the best tapas bars.

And a Spain-inspired recipe featured on www.NoshOn.It for its gluten-free Sunday specials.

I remember the colors as I write this.

And I can smell the oregano from Ca La Nati.

Summer came very quickly.

A birthday in Newport, RI, weekends in Gloucester and Provincetown, MA.

Salads, summer tarts, a fun interview, and participating in the Julia Child’s 100th anniversary campaign.

A summer to remember. Financiers to savor. Quiet sunny times to appreciate.

And thank you to BostInno for calling Frenchie and the Yankee one of Boston’s must-read food blogs.

The trip to Montreal was a nice end-of-summer break.

Going back to Olive & Gourmando, eating at Les 400 Coups and taking long walks in the city.

Montreal and this unequivocal blend of European and North American cultures.

Unique and colorful.

Fall came right around the corner and with a new season, new trips to plan.

But the joy of spending the change of seasons in New England remain the best feeling in the world.

Eating pieces of a chestnut flour savory cake with prosciutto and sun-dried tomatoes, while contemplating the idea of traveling through the region to observe the changing of seasons.

A time filled with colorful apples and squash varieties, baked apple scents and cinnamon.

Un vrai plaisir !

As 2012 started with France, it ended with France as well in November.

But not without spicing up the trip with an Istanbul stop.

Beautiful Turkey.

Memories of bright pomegranates, smiling people and red flags everywhere to celebrate their National Holiday.

A spiced pumpkin cake with rose water and cloves to remember the trip forever.

Fabrics and colorful dishes to bring a new life to my home.

I don’t know what 2013 will bring – well, I have an idea.

There will be new trips and new recipes of course.

Experiences to look forward to.

People to meet.

And food to eat!

Happy New Year to all! Bonne Année !

May 2013 be the best yet.

Frenchie and la Belle France

11 Dec

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La belle France !

I’ve been back for a month now and I’m finally sitting down to post some pictures and a new recipe directly inspired by this recent trip.

A journey in France under a soothing and warm fall sun.

Where red and green intertwine and the light coming from the sky is pale and white.

A color combination to remember in the kitchen when preparing a special seafood dish to impart this experience.

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The greatest of adventures in Paris is to discover new things, new places and new sceneries.

My latest kick? Walk through as many cours intérieures as possible.

Ever wanted to see those lovely small inside courtyards behind those big Parisian locked doors?

And despite the digicodes - those entry control systems with numeric pads outside every main doors in Paris – one might be sneaky enough to press the entry/exit button during the day when most systems are not turned on yet.

Between rue de Charonne and rue du Faubourg Saint-Antoine.

Or as you stroll rue Pigalle and around rue des Martyrs.

I discovered gems.

Even behind 17 rue Bleue where the Cantine de la maison de la culture arménienne – a small restaurant at the Armenian Cultural Center – hides at the back of the courtyard.

And if you surprisingly run into la gardienne, just say Bonjour Madame !

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So many treasures to uncover.

And in these enclosed courtyards, protected from the outside world and noises, it’s the discreet and muffled sound of Parisian life that is distinctly heard through the few open windows.

A certain mood floating around as I stand in the center, looking up and around.

Demure. Calm. Unassuming. Yet full of life.

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The pastoral French countryside.

A bucolic side trip where the same colorful reds and greens kept revealing themselves in a scenic patchwork.

A wealth of trees and grass.

Farmers’ markets filled with distorted red orangish gourds and bright squash varieties.

The whispers of the market – a light hubbub of friends and neighbors babbling under a pale and transparent morning light.

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This new recipe was not only inspired by the color scheme following me throughout the trip but also by L’Agrume, a restaurant in the 5th arrondissement of Paris.

A bowl full of white pale clams.

Sprinkled with green onions.

A touch of red chorizo.

And a simple after taste of lemon.

It made for a perfect dish to enjoy throughout November.

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Clams, Chorizo and Green Onions with Creamy Lemon Broth

serves 4

3.5 cups (80 cl) of water

1 cube of vegetable bouillon (I use vegan vegetable bouillon cubes with sea salt)

the zest and juice of one organic lemon

2 Tbsp of chopped thyme

1 Tbsp of fennel seeds

2 green onions thinly sliced (green and white parts) + 2 more for sprinkling

sea salt and pepper

2 lbs (1 kg) of littleneck clams

1 Tbsp (15 g) of butter

2 heaping Tbsp of crème fraîche

about 3 oz (75 g) of chorizo – thinly sliced

slices of bread

In a big heavy pot, combine the water, bouillon cube, lemon zest and juice, thyme, fennel seeds, green onions, salt and pepper.

Bring to a boil.

Place the clams directly in the boiling water, reduce the heat, and cook until the clams open.

In the meantime, remove the casing around the chorizo and slice it thinly.

When the clams open, remove them from the pot and place them in a separate bowl covered with foil or a towel to keep warm.

Drop the butter and crème fraîche in the clam broth and stir until melted and well-combined.

Add the chorizo slices to the pot, stir and remove them as soon as they start to release a brightly red tint.

Serve the clams in bowls, top with the warm chorizo slices and scoop out the creamy lemon broth with a spoon. Drizzle all over the bowl and clams.

Sprinkle the last green onion slices on top with an extra dash of freshly ground pepper and some more thyme if needed.

Do not forget the slices of bread to soak up the broth.

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Frenchie and Istanbul

13 Nov

Eyes still filled with the colors and smiles of Turkey.

Teşekkür ederim. Merci. Thank you.

The frenetic city of Istanbul teaching me its wealth of culture and history, showing me its people and their kindness while I find my way through its maze of narrow streets.

Jewish, Spanish, Arabic, Greek, Armenian influences throughout the city.

Straddling the continents of Asia and Europe, Istanbul offered me so much more than expected.

A big inspiration for this week’s recipe, perfect for Thanksgiving, rich in Turkish flavors and imparted by experiences from far, far away.

There is always something happening in Istanbul.

A cat stretching in the sun.

Tasting creamy goats’ cheeses in the Spice Bazaar.

Antique furniture shopping in Çukurcuma where the store owners casually wait outside sipping Turkish coffees.

Eyeing fresh pumpkin flans from the street vendors.

An older woman making flower crowns.

Pomegranates and oranges squeezed together for delicious juices on the side of the road.

Or the quiet serenity inside the city’s many mosques.

I made many friends in Istanbul.

The meyhane owner  displaying with pride his beautiful tray of mezes and talking to me through the entire dinner about his eastern Turkey background and upbringing.

The little boy on the boat gliding on the Bosphorus carefully listening to my English playfully shying away from questions.

The pack of 4 dogs strolling with me throughout the city for 2 hours to show me the way – barking with joy as they made me the 5th element of their tight group.

The street vendor who wanted to sell me an old record player. Next time! he said in English.

The Turkish pumpkin desserts I ate and saw sold in the streets were a big inspiration for this post’s recipe.

Poached pumpkin desserts - Kabak Tatlısı.

Or pumpkin flans with a sweet crusty top.

And how ironic that Thanksgiving is right around the corner.

A new dessert that almost tastes like a slice of pumpkin pie but remains interestingly foreign and different.

A twist on everyone’s favorite dessert to bring to your Thanksgiving table.

The rose water from the soft Turkish delights.

The hazelnuts from the sticky pastries.

And the cloves from the pieces of baklava.

With each street corner, a new surprise.

Crowded and noisy.

Colorful and exotic.

And a walk through the Spice Bazaar, where the East meets Europe, as eclectic as one can imagine.

Spices, herbs, honey, nuts, Iranian caviar, teas.

Bags full of seeds as tall as me.

My nose and my eyes weren’t prepared for this labyrinth of flavors and scents.

As I write this post eating a piece of the pumpkin cake and going through the many pictures of this beautiful trip, my 10 favorite Istanbul moments come back rushing.

10- Boating on the Bosphorus and the Sea of Marmara to the Princes’ Islands on the Asian side of Istanbul. The crowd, the sun, the views and that break from the bustle of the city.

9- Admiring the golden Arabic calligraphic ornaments in most mosques – mesmerized by the art of Ottoman calligraphy.

8- Laying on warm marble and looking up the small, star-like windows piercing the main dome of the old historic 1741 Cağaloğlu Baths.

7- Dipping my hand in a giant bag of seeds at the Spice Bazaar.

6- Licking my fingers after eating a sticky piece of baklava on narrow and busy Nevizade Sokak near the fish market.

5- The softness of the rugs under my socks – shut away from the noise and the world while exploring mosques.

4- Exploring the atmospheric historic streets of the Fener and Balat neighborhoods – home to many of the Greeks in the city.

3- Chatting up with the restaurant hecklers at night trying to grab your attention while choosing a place to eat.

2- Watching the sunset over the Golden Horn, behind the mosques and the Palace.

1- Picking out mezes to eat from giant trays filled with small dishes already prepared for you to choose from.

Turkey-Inspired Pumpkin Cake with Rose Water, Hazelnuts and Cloves

use an 8-by-11-inch baking dish OR a 14-by-4-inch tart pan

1 small sugar pumpkin – peeled, seeded and cut into small cubes (3 cups – about 680 g)

1 stick of butter (melted and cooled) + 2 Tbsp (113 g + 30 g)

1/4 cup of blonde cane sugar + 3 Tbsp (50 g + 35 g)

3 Tbsp of rose water

3/4 cup (105 g) of buckwheat flour

1/4 cup (25 g) of hazelnut flour

2 Tbsp of millet flour

2 Tbsp of coconut flour

1 teaspoon of cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon of ground cloves

a dash of ground nutmeg

3/4 teaspoon of baking powder

1/2 teaspoon of baking soda

a sprinkle of sea salt

2 eggs

3/4 cup (150 g) of light brown sugar

1/2 cup (55 g) of chopped hazelnuts – or pistachios

Preheat the oven to 350 °F (180 °C). Butter the baking dish or the tart pan.

Heat 2 Tbsp of the butter, 3 Tbsp of the sugar and 2 Tbsp of rose water in a large sauté pan over medium heat. When the butter has melted, add the pumpkin cubes and cook for 6-7 minutes until tender. The water should be absorbed and evaporated at that point.

Let the pumpkin cubes cool and set aside.

In a big bowl, mix together the flours, cinnamon, ground cloves and nutmeg, baking powder and soda and the salt.

In a medium bowl, beat together the melted stick (113 g) of butter, the remaining 1/4 cup (50 g) of blonde cane sugar, the remaining 1 Tbsp of rose water, the brown sugar and the eggs until creamy, pale and smooth – about 2 minutes.

Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and stir until combined.

Add the hazelnuts and the pumpkin and stir until combined.

Pour the batter into the baking dish or the tart pan (do not fill the tart pan up to the top) and bake for 35-40 minutes until firm and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Divide the cake into bars, almost like a brownie.

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