True Turkish Style BBQ

I had been to this kitchen before, and have wondered at the amount of gadgets, the shiny equipment, the mountains of spices and exotic ingredients and rows of the sharpest and most stunning knife collections I have ever seen. The only thing that’s been missing is the person to which this kitchen belongs. Yesterday I met my friend Deniz’s dad, who LOVES his kitchen, food, cooking and his homeland – Turkey.

We were there for a Sunday night BBQ after my boyfriend and Deniz had finished a long afternoon of American Football playing and coaching. I had been to Deniz’s family home before for BBQs but this time it was different – his awesome Dad was there. I think we were both as excited as each other about meeting each other, both having our passionate attitudes towards food having been discussed at length when the other not there. This BBQ and Kamil’s passion met all expectations!

Now, for the details of this amazing Turkish BBQ… lets start with the BBQ itself – a huge fire pit with grills that slide apart to enable you to tend to the coals, big enough for a feast and complimented by all the BBQ tools you could possibly need.

We started with some halloumi that had been sprinkled with a little chilli, quickly crisped up on each side on the BBQ just long enough not to lose them to the blazing charcoals below. Salty and squeaky with a decent chilli kick.

The meat was the main event – burgers, three types of sausages, lamb kebabs all presented beautifully with a sprinkling of oregano. A delicious accompaniment seen in the background was thinly sliced red onions dressed with sumac and topped with chopped parsley, perfect with all of the meat, particularly the kebabs.

Check out the ‘swords’ used for the kebabs – I must get myself some!

With all this meat we also had sweetcorn rubbed with lemon and a chilli, paprika and salt mix after cooking – a really nice way to add a bit of flavour to corn on the cob.

I impressed by being able to compete with the boys and had a generous spoonful of Kamil’s homemade chilli sauce, it was great with the burgers.

A little too late came the most delicious rice I have tasted. I forgot to get the recipe but it had little pieces of vermicelli, chickpeas, split lentils, butter and chicken stock – such a shame I had already filled up on all that meat!

The other thing that I love about this Turkish home is the quantity of food they are able to keep in the house – they have a large family and always cook big meals from scratch. With only two us in my little flat there is no need for so much, I think that means I need to plan for a big family or start inviting people over more!

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