Turkish cook’s book shortlisted in prestigious list
A cook whose newly published book outlining foremost 550 food recipes of the Turkish cuisine has been shortlisted in the top international gastronomy publishing competition has stressed that the occasion and season of the meals are vital in defining a traditional dish.
Musa Dağdeviren, founder and owner of the world-famous Çiya restaurant on Istanbul’s Asian side district of Kadıköy, recently wrote The Turkish Cookbook.
The book, explaining the “550 recipes of hearty, healthy Turkish cuisine,” has been chosen among the best 16 in Chef Book and best 18 in the Mediterranean categories of the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards.
Dağdeviren’s book will represent the Turkish cuisine in the grand finale to be held in China in May 2020, along with Yunus Emre Akkor’s book on Kayseri local cuisine, Cenk Girginol’s book on Turkish coffee or kahve, Metin Özata and Atilla Bektaş’s book on the new Mediterranean diet, Ayfer Yavi’s work on pastry recipes, Vedat Ozan’s book on aromatic smells, Özlem Warren’s book on homemade dishes and Taha Dinç’s book on black wheat – all other books shortlisted in other categories of the Gourmand Awards.
Traditional vs local
“In categorizing [the dishes], seasons are vital. That’s how it works at Çiya as well. For instance, a note was put down on the recipe of a food made of greengage indicating that it should be eaten during spring,” Dağdeviren told Turkish magazine Robb Report on Dec. 12.
“There is information on dishes eaten at a feast, Easter Day, Passover supper, Nevruz, spring celebration Hıdırellez, wedding day and day of funeral mourning. I also wrote texts explaining meal habits of different regions in our country … With these rituals, we tried to unveil the relations between the traditional and the local,” he said.
Dağdeviren emphasized that even those interested in the Turkish cuisine cannot easily differentiate between traditional Turkish dishes and the Anatolian local ones. The latter can only be found in certain localities, whereas haricot bean or lamb stew can be eaten in every province of Turkey, according to Dağdeviren.
Following Çiya’s well-deserved recognition among Turkey’s best restaurants in the international press, Dağdeviren’s appearance on Netflix’s gastronomy docuseries Chef’s Table has increased his popularity on the world stage, and his book can add on that.