Dairy products in Turkish Cuisine continue to decorate not only the tables of our country but the tables of the whole world. The discussions on butter are continuous. Milk, the source of healing, is considered as the cornerstone of growth which is indispensable for Turks from Central Asia. There are many different products obtained from milk to increase the body’s resistance in the cold climate of Central Asia. Milk has always appeared on the table from the moment we settled in Anatolia.
Butter in Turkish Cuisine
Consuming milk and butter was very disgusting for the nobles in the Roman and Byzantine periods, according to some sources. In some commentary, it is said that butter and milk were consumed only by barbarians in the Roman and Byzantine period. The psychological reason underlying this may be that the Turks are very fond of butter. Turks, especially living in Central Asia, consumed the butter in order to maintain the body temperature in the cold climate. The natural butter is made with a simple wooden kitchen utensil called a Churn (“yayık”). It is quite common to consume butter raw and to use it for cooking. Butter was a kind of food only made at home in a natural way and was not a sold item in the 1950s. However, butter has been introduced as a harmful food which is distanced from the new generation as a result of maybe the anti-propaganda made by the margarine sector. However, butter has found the value that it deserves with the increasing trend of healthy and natural life in recent years.
Yoghurt and Kanlıca Yoghurt
One of the rare words that we export to western languages even in our pronunciation is yoghurt (yog means to thicken in Turkish). Yoghurt is one of the most delicious foods obtained from milk. Prophet Abraham was said to ferment the yoghurt for the first time. Turks has a tradition of fermenting the yoghurt from dew drops in spring. The yoghurt, which is acidic, does not contain any germs, and there are no risks associated with milk like Brusella. For this reason, yogurt is one of the healthiest dairy products.
The formation of the yoghurt is as old as the Turkish history changes with the immigrants coming to our country 150 years ago. Arriving in Istanbul 150 years ago to escape persecution and oppression, the immigrants settled on the back of Kanlıca, which was called Muhacir Mahallesi (foreigners’ neighborhood) and is still the name of this region. The immigrants continue the same tradition with stock farming and agriculture that they engaged in the Balkans. Yoghurt is made with the milk acquired from the cows fed with the delicious herbs of Kanlıca. The famous taste known as Kanlıca Yoghurt was sold by the Nazlı Family, the Önyol Family, and particularly, the Sakkaf Family, for a long time.
Today, there are no dairies in Kanlıca. The vegetation in Kanlıca is not how it used to be. However, you can find yoghurt with magnificent flavors on the coast of Kanlıca when you go to Istanbul. We recommend that you consume plain yoghurt, although it is served with powdered sugar in some places.
Famous Turkish Cheeses
Switzerland, which is known for holiday resorts, ski tracks and clocks, is also named in Swiss cheese, which is consumed all over the world. However, you do not have to go to Switzerland to taste delicious cheese. Produced at different points of Anatolia, Turkish cheese varieties are also quite famous and delicious.
Konya Moldy Cheese
Konya Moldy cheese can be preferred as organic food, which has been the trend of recent years. The cheese, which is produced in a completely natural way, is made of sheep’s milk. It can be molded naturally since its oil is skimmed off. It will draw your attention with its aromatic taste.
The taste of Kars Kashar (kind of Kashkaval) Cheese, which is sold as 10-12-pound wheels, is known by everyone. However, there is another type of cheese produced in Kars: Kars Gruyere. It can be indispensable both with its appearance and taste.
Varto Goat Cheese
Varto goat cheese, which is usually made from cow’s milk, but is also made from goat’s milk, will give you pleasure with both its appearance and presentation. The goat cheese has a soft consistency despite its difficult formation.
Diyarbakır Braided Cheese
The cheese is described as braided cheese devoted to Diyarbakır and it is reminiscent of the hair braid. The cheese is made with great care and is especially popular for breakfast.
Smoked Abaza Cheese
It is produced by families of the Abaza origin, belonging to the Marmara Region. In appearance, the Smoked Abaza Cheese resembles the bread of Trabzon. It amazes everyone with the crust and the whitey cheese.
Van Herbal Cheese
With its looks that evoke a spacious and natural atmosphere, Van herbal cheese is a different type of a cheese mixed with some herbs such as thyme, siyabo, mint and wild garlic.
Ezine cheese is an extremely appetizing and aromatic cheese produced in Trakya, especially in Edirne. It can be either from a cow, goat, sheep, or all; full fat, half fat, salty, light, soft, or hard. Try before buying more!