Of course, the art of cooking and good nourishment is never far from my mind, and so my interest was piqued when I read that Allen of Eating Out Loud was exploring the delights of Turkish cuisine. Like Allen, I don't know all that much about Turkish culinary traditions, though I've enjoyed all the dishes I have prepared and regularly read Almost Turkish Recipes.
A big thanks to Allen for purchasing a copy of The Food and Cooking of Turkey and for noting and sharing his adapted version of these tender shallow fried rolls that I successfully adapted and enjoyed with friends. Slightly sweet, but also a little tart, with a hint of herbs, I served them alongside a mixed green salad splashed with Lemon Mint Dressing for a delightfully satisfying light meal.
Sweet Potato and Apricot Rolls with Mint Yogurt SauceOther Turkish recipes from Lisa's Kitchen you might enjoy:
For the Mint Sauce:
1 cup of plain yogurt
1 garlic clove, crushed
1/4 cup of finely minced fresh mint
juice from one small lemon
For the Rolls:
1 medium sweet potato
1 cup of cooked chickpeas (1/3 cup dried)
4 green onions, finely chopped
1/2 cup of dried apricots, finely chopped
4 tablespoons of pine nuts
1 - 2 fresh red chillies (or cayenne peppers), finely chopped
1/4 cup of fresh basil, finely chopped
1/4 cup of fresh dill, finely chopped
lots of freshly cracked black pepper
1 teaspoon of sea salt
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup of cornmeal
1/2 - 1 cup of breadcrumbs
1/2 cup of unbleached white flour
oil for frying (I used peanut oil)
Whisk together the ingredients for the Mint Sauce and refrigerate.
Peel the sweet potato, cut into slices, place in a small pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat slightly and cook until soft. Drain and transfer to a medium bowl, along with the cooked chickpeas. Mash the chickpeas and sweet potato together until well combined.
Stir in the green onions, apricots, pine nuts, red chili, dill, basil and salt and pepper. Now stir in the egg. Add the cornmeal and 1/2 cup of the breadcrumbs. Add more breadcrumbs until the mixture is slightly moist and holds together.
Shape into roughly 3" long croquettes. Roll each portion in the flour.
In a heavy frying pan or pot, heat roughly 1/2 inch of oil over medium high heat. When it is hot, put the rolls in the oil, and fry for roughly 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Turn the rolls every few minutes so they evenly brown. Drain on paper towel. Serve with the mint yogurt sauce.
Yields roughly 14 - 16 croquettes.
Wilted Spinach with Pine Nuts and Lemon Yogurt Dressing
Turkish Yogurt Hummus
Feta and Olive Scones
Turkish Barley and Apricot Porridge
Turkish Sour Cherry Pilaf