Bulgur: the first convenience food

On a recent trip to Gaziantep, a bustling, vibrant city of 1.8 million people in south-eastern Turkey, I made some astonishing discoveries. I’d been invited to Gaziantep for the city’s very first Bulgur Festival, a celebration to highlight the city’s recent addition to UNESCO’ s Creative Cities Network for gastronomy. Described by locals as “yellow … Continue reading

The Ancient Cuisine of Gaziantep

I’d never seen such vivid green pistachios – brighter than the freshest green buds of Spring – that at first I thought I was hallucinating. They’d been crushed and were being strewn over tissue thin sheets of pastry lightly brushed with oil followed by a sprinkling of sugar and dots of clotted cream. The pastry … Continue reading

Christmas with Baz and Trish

During the weeks leading up to Christmas in London, I was overwhelmed by the number of English celebrity chefs and cooks giving advice in the newspapers about how to prepare this year’s festive meal. The Times featured Mary Berry’s easy turkey with five ingredients, Bill Granger’s boned, rolled turkey breast and a whole turkey smothered in black truffle butter … Continue reading

Meditation on Pomegranates

If you buy a pomegranate, buy one whose ripeness has caused it to be cleft open with a seed-revealing smile. Its laughter is a blessing, for through its wide-open mouth it shows its heart, like a pearl in the jewel box of spirit. The red anemone laughs, too, but through its mouth you glimpse a … Continue reading

Meditation on Quinces

It had a cloak of ash-coloured down hovering over its smooth golden body, and when it lay naked in my hand, with nothing more than its daffodil-coloured shift, it made me think of her I cannot mention, and I feared the ardour of my breath would shrivel it in my fingers. Isn’t that Aphrodite’s apple? … Continue reading

How To Taste Liquid Gold

Which country is the world’s largest producer of olive oil? If you said Spain, you’re right. But were you aware that if you planted all of Spain’s olive trees five metres apart, they would circle the world twenty one times? It’s a staggering figure of almost 283 million trees, covering 2.5 million hectares.  Spain produces … Continue reading