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Kategori: Recipe

>End of Another Journey…

>

 

My trip to visit my brother’s family is almost over… I go back to New Jersey, my real life, tomorrow.  I have been here for nine days and I don’t know where the time has gone.  Basically I spent most of my time sitting at home and watching my nephew while he slept, fed and p…ed.  This whole week has had a very calming effect on me; previously, I never would’ve believed that I could’ve sat still without any major activity for this long.  This has been the antidote to my hectic, boisterous summer in Bodrum but the predominant essence underlying both trips have been the element of family, connecting and creating memories.  I will probably treasure this week among the most precious in my life, the week I spent bonding with my newborn nephew.

Another great coincidence was Cenk’s absence due to business in New York; Wendy and I had a wonderful time at home taking care of the baby, outside taking the baby on our daily outings to the Grove or the museum.  As it turns out, Cenk and Wendy’s apartment is five minutes from the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, otherwise known as LACMA.  This was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up even in my most serene state of mind.  Most people who know me wouldn’t be surprised that I found my way either to the museum itself or to the park surrounding it at least four to five times this past week.  It was inevitable…

 

We did get the opportunity to spend one Saturday with Cenk before he left and it ended up being a lovely day that began with breakfast at home and then later on a trip to the Grove, an outdoor shopping center located next to the Farmer’s Market, which is almost across the street from their apartment complex.

The Grove was delightful; we sat outside by the fountain at ‘the Farm of Beverly Hills’.  The coffee was great and the light fare we enjoyed was delicious.  Cenk opted for a cheese plate, I had Huevos Rancheros, basted eggs on a crisp corn tortilla with a ranchero sauce topped with cheese and avocado and Wendy had chicken fingers – her classic choice for this particular restaurant, I am told.
I concluded my meal with a piece of cheese and some candied pecans and caramelized pears from Cenk’s Cheese Plate.
This was my colorful ‘Huevos Rancheros’ which was innovative and surprising.
The Farm of Bevelry Hills at the Grove
189 the Grove Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(323) 525-1699
For Cenk’s last dinner before he left, I prepared some of his favorites including ‘Torn Borek with Cheese’ which is  sort of a Turkish version of a cheese soufflé.  This was very impressive when it came out of the oven and they told me it tasted as good as it looked; I had to be satisfied with their declaration since I couldn’t judge for myself (it is definitely not gluten-free.)

 

‘Torn Borek with Cheese’
6 Flour Tortillas Shredded into small pieces
5 beaten eggs
1 cup milk
2 cups shredded cheese (Mozarella or Mixed Mexican Cheese)
1/4 cup melted margarine
Mix all ingredients together and pour in a greased oven proof dish.  Leave in the refrigerator overnight.  Bake in 350 degree oven for about one hour. Serve immediately.
For this past week, I played the part of the elderly aunt come to help out… I don’t know when my life changed so much or when I changed so much that I am happy and content in this role.  I am still surprised at myself and haven’t quite figured out the reason for this transformation… or maybe I have… That sweet smell, those trusting, smiling eyes, those heart melting cooing sounds… there is almost nothing I won’t do, no role I am not willing to play to be able to hold him as he sleeps peacefully in my arms.

>My Solution for an Empty Nest Syndrome.

>I woke up feeling a little bereft this morning.  Both the boys were gone, Hasan had returned to New Jersey last week, Murat had left on a sailing trip for a week…it was just my husband, my mother-in-law, Bostan and I left in the house…  and today was Hasan’s birthday too… So what do we do now, I asked myself, even before I got out of bed…  Since I was the first one out of bed, I moped around for a bit waiting for everyone to wake up. After a while I started to plan our breakfast, my brilliant solution to a mellow mood…  I would make eggs… something a little creative, maybe… Then my husband woke up and I asked him how he would like his eggs, his  response was ‘Menemen’ not at all surprising since this is his usual response to this question nine times out of ten.  ‘Menemen’ is a Turkish invention that can be eaten for breakfast or for a meal since it is made with tomatoes and peppers and even at times, onions.  I am not sure if there is any one set recipe, as long as you add tomatoes and eggs.  I just go by whatever I have on hand at the moment or however the mood strikes me.  Here are the general guidelines:

‘Menemen’ (Eggs with tomatoes)

Olive oil
Eggs
Tomatoes
Peppers (Red or green)
Onion (Optional)
Parsley (Optional)
Cheese (Feta- Optional)
Salt and Pepper to taste

The following is how I prepared the eggs in the picture… you have free reign… go wild…

1.  I put 1 Tbspn of olive oil and 1 Tbspn vegetable oil in a pan and
2.  sautéd the diced red peppers  (1 big pepper)  meanwhile
3.  I put two big tomatoes in boiling water for two minutes (this will help to peel them very, very easily), took  them out, peeled and diced them;
4.  threw the tomatoes into the pan as well, keep on sautéing on low heat, till the liquid had evaporated from the tomatoes and only the oil was left with the vegetables in the pan – this takes about 10-15 minutes.
5.  I made little indentations in the tomato mixture and broke 5 whole eggs and 2 egg yolks into this.
6.  Closed the lid for a little bit and let it cook.
7.  I checked after a couple of minutes to see if the egg whites had started to cook- from now on everything depends on your taste- we don’t like our eggs to be cooked too much so
8. when the eggs whites started look like they had started to set (Turned a white color from the clear liquid) I put my 1/2 cup of shredded feta cheese in at this point and cook until the cheese has melted,
9.  add the 2 Tbspn of chopped parsley and keep it on the heat for another minute and serve.

Afiyet Olsun…
Bon Apetite…

Note: If you want to add onions, add them with the peppers and cook them until they turn yellow.  You can use any kind of cheese but feta is the best suited one in my opinion.
Be forewarned, you will consume lots and lots of bread with this meal.  The best would be Turkish bread, of course, but a baguette or a sour dough will do fine as well.

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