Archive: September, 2013

Thursday
September 12, 2013

Culinary Delights to Try in Turkey

Turkey has been forged from centuries of the clashing, merging and meshing of myriad cultures and civilisations, including Roman, Ottoman and Byzantium to name but a few. The result was that this huge land with its dusty, vibrant cities, glassy lakes, pine-covered mountains and fascinating geological formations became a melting pot in every sense – even geographically, bridging, as it does, the gap between the middle east and Europe. All this is equally reflected in the country’s much-loved cuisine, which comprises elements of: Ottoman, Balkan, Asian, Middle Eastern and, of course, Mediterranean. Taking holidays to Turkey means you’ll have a chance to sample the myriads of culinary delights that the place has to offer, and they vary from region to region. Read on to find out what you might be eating at different Turkish resorts to whet your appetite further.

Palmiye

Located in the Taurus Mountains with their rugged peaks, the Palmiye resort offers diners three restaurants and a weekly gourmet cooking demonstration. What’s more, the dining facilities here have all have the title of Table Coup de Coeur bestowed on them for top-quality food and service.

The Topkapi restaurant specialises in Turkish cuisine in the form of Fish Tagine, a beautifully fragrant and flavoursome dish cooked in a pot with garlic, paprika, tomatoes, lemon and olives. Mangal is also served here, which is essentially Turkish barbecue. Named for the outdoor stove used by Turkish peasants that was popular prior to the 20th century, mangal is as much about food as hospitality and sharing. While the mainstay of this concept is meat (mainly chicken and lamb), salads, shish, köfte and grilled vegetables are served alongside. It’s traditional to drink Saglam with mangal – which is salted, spiced turnip juice!

Belek Villas

Set on the glorious Turkish Riviera, here, you can enjoy your cuisine either in your own villa, which will be personally catered, or in one of the three restaurants.

Specialities at Belek Villas include meze, a smorgasbord that comprises of white cheeses, calamari, hummus, hard-boiled eggs, garlic, stuffed vine leaves, aubergine salad, melon, pork sausages cooked in orange peel, goat’s cheese and much, much more. Other meat and fresh fish dishes are on offer, such as lamb cooked on the bone and sea bass cooked in chard. Snacks include Gözleme, a pastry stuffed with spinach, cheese or potato and authentic kebabs. Everything is seasoned with fresh local ingredients.

Bodrum Palmiye

Set on a peaceful peninsula, jutting out into the warm Aegean Sea, the restaurants at Bodrum Palmiye also have Table Coup de Coeur honours. Gourmet cooking demonstrations are held three times a week and you can taste the creations in the form of and Cappdoce Lamb (which was traditionally cooked in a sealed clay pot which was then smashed open to be consumed).

Uniquely, there are also weekly excursions available to the local food markets, where you can taste a variety of local delicacies and products like simit (Turkish seeded pretzel) and lamb sweetbreads.

So when you’re in Turkey, the trick is to eat like the locals. Follow that advice and you’ll be dining like kings and queens every night.

Categories: AD
Tuesday
September 10, 2013

Creating the Illusion of Space in a Smaller Flat

You shouldn’t feel miffed about having to move into a flat that’s smaller than your last residence. Arranging and furnishing a smaller living space should be viewed as a challenge to be met, not as a sentence to serve.

A quick flip through home design magazines or blogs will leave you pleasantly surprised at the amount of things you can do to create the illusion of space in a smaller flat. A quick look at bettaliving.co.uk for instance, will show you some examples of what you can accomplish.

There are so many things you could do to enhance the space in your flat, but here are some of the basics:

Interior colours

It’s advisable to use light and neutral colours to give your flat a sense of space. Go for white, beige, grey and other similarly neutral colours. This gives the impression that your walls further back, as opposed to bringing them in.

You can enhance the effects you’ve achieved with the colours by using mirrors tactically; place them opposite windows so you can bounce natural light around the room to add an extra dimension.

Furniture

Multi-functional furniture is the way forward in smaller spaces. You want pieces of furniture that provide storage, function and if you’re lucky, aesthetic pleasure. You can have a dining table with plenty of storage space beneath it, for instance, which can double as an office desk during the daytime if you work from home.

You should also be keeping an eye out for futons and fold out couches. They’re perfect if you don’t have a guest room, but love having people over to stay.

The same goes for your wardrobes too. Replace the ones you have with ones that have sliding doors, so they don’t use too much space. Try and get wardrobes that are as tall as possible, allowing you to store things in boxes at the bottom.

Utilising the hallway

It may initially seem like a bad idea to use the hallway to store things. If you do it in the right way however, it can really help de-clutter the rest of your flat. Cleverly located shelving is the perfect place to keep gloves, car keys and other bits and bobs.

If you don’t have any more room in the rest of the house to hang up your family photographs, perhaps dedicating a small section of the wall in the hallway will add a nice touch.

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