Monday, February 12, 2007

Ground Beef Stuffed Bell Peppers

Biber Dolmasi
Originally uploaded by Ashley van Gerven.


12 large green bell peppers (cleaned, tops cut off, seeds and membranes removed)
250 gr. ground meat
1 medium onion (chopped)
½ cup rice
½ bunch fresh parsley (minced)
½ bunch fresh dill (optional)
3 tomatoes (chopped)
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
½ tablespoon tomato paste
½ tablespoon red pepper paste
1 dessert spoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon minced fresh mint or 1 dessertspoon dried mint
1 tomato (thinly sliced)


Wash the rice twice and soak the rice in salted (1 dessert spoon) lukewarm water for about 15 minutes. Then put them into a rice strainer and drain the water.

In a mixing bowl, combine drained rice, ground meat, chopped onion, minced parsley, minced dill, tomato and pepper paste, olive oil, chopped tomatoes. Season with salt, black pepper and mint, mix well.

Stuff the peppers with the mixture. Keep in mind to stuff only ¾ of pepper cups. Because during the cooking rice will enlarge and fill the cover. Put tomato slices on top of them.

Place stuffed bell peppers in a large saucepan. Pour enough water to reach depth of 2 inches (water level is slightly below the peppers) and cook over low heat until tender, do not overcook. As an alternative cooking technique, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place the stuffed peppers in a shallow baking dish. Bake until fork tender, turning the stuffed peppers halfway through the cooking time.

Serve with yogurt and garlic dressing. To prepare yogurt and garlic dressing, pour 2 cups yogurt into a small bowl, add 2 cloves of crushed garlic and whisk together.

Have a good appetite!

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Quotation from Yunus Emre

Wing Sweep
Originally uploaded by jedrek.

“We love the created
For the Creator's sake”.

Yunus Emre

Manti (Turkish Ravioli)

Manti (Turkish Tortellini)
Originally uploaded by Tulipa Turcica.

Manti is a traditional dish in Turkey. Sometimes it is called “Turkish Ravioli”, “Turkish Dumplings”or “Turkish Tortellini”. Homemade manti is very delicious and superb meal. It takes time to prepare, but it's worth it.

In Turkey, the most famous manti is Kayseri style manti, their size is very tiny. People from Kayseri say “40 pieces of manti have to fit in one tablespoon”. The size of the manti is the choice of the cook and does not affect the taste. Some people like to make manti in different sizes.


2,5 cups flour
1 egg
100 gr. milk
½ dessert spoon salt

250 gr. finely ground meat (rib roast of heifer )
1 onion (finely chopped)
½ bunch fresh parsley (minced)
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon salt

6 cups hot beef stock or water
1,5 dessert spoons salt

1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive or corn oil
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon paprika powder
2/3 cup hot beef stock or water

Yogurt & Garlic Dressing
3 cups yogurt
3 cloves garlic


Put flour into a large bowl. Sprinkle salt over flour. Make a pool in the centre.Crack the egg and gradually pour the milk into the pool. Mix the ingredients to form a dough.

Place the dough on a working surface. Knead well until making a smooth dough (knead aproximately 10 minutes).

When the dough is smooth and elastic, return it to the bowl, cover it with a damp cloth or wrap the dough with a plastic wrap, let it rest at room temperature for one hour.

Meanwhile, combine ground meat, finely chopped onion, minced parsley, freshly ground black pepper and salt into a mixing bowl and stir with a wooden spoon. Cover with cling film and set it aside.

Divide the dough into 2 balls. Work on a lightly floured surface and put some flour on each ball. Using a rolling-pin, roll out each ball of dough into a round layer (as thin as possible). Cut the round piece into 3 x 3 cm squares.

Take each square seperately, put 1/2 teaspoon of ground beef, onion and parsley mixture into the center of each square. Seal crosswise edges firmly over filling by pressing with your fingers.

Carefully transfer the dumplings onto a greased baking tray. Bake the dumplings in a preheated oven for ten minutes until crisp. Set them aside to cool.

Pour 6 cups of hot stock /water into a medium sized saucepan. Bring to a boil. Add 1,5 dessert spoons salt. Add dumplings into the boiling stock and cook for ten minutes until tender.

Meanwhile, heat a small sized nonstick frying pan over medium-low heat. Combine olive oil, butter, tomato paste, hot beef stock or water, red pepper flakes and simmer for 2-3 minutes. Transfer the sauce into the saucepan and stir with a wooden spoon. 1 minute later, remove the saucepan from the heat.

Using a slotted spoon, gently remove dumplings from the saucepan, place them on a warmed serving platter.

Spoon sauce into the bottom of the warmed plates. Spoon yogurt & garlic dressing over each plate of dumplings.

To prepare yogurt and garlic dressing, pour 3 cups yogurt into a small bowl, add 3 cloves of crushed garlic and whisk together.

Have a good appetite!

Friday, February 09, 2007

Leek With Olive Oil

Leeks like onions and garlic, reduce bad cholesterol levels, while raising good cholesterol levels. Leeks lower high blood pressure, stabilize blood sugar. Regular consumption of leeks reduce risk of prostate and colon cancers, protect colon cells from cancer-causing toxins. Leeks are a good source of manganese, magnesium, vitamin B6, vitamin A-C-K, folate, and iron.


750 gr. leek
1 onion
1 big carrot
3,5 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons rice
1,5 cups hot water
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 dessert spoon sugar
1 dessert spoon salt


Wash the leeks and cut them into 2 inch pieces. Put the sliced leeks into a strainer and drain the water. Be sure to drain it thoroughly.

Cut the carrot into 1/8 inch thick slices.

Heat a medium size nonstick saucepan over medium-low heat. Heat the oil in the saucepan.

Add finely chopped onions and the sliced carrots and saute over medium heat until the onions are golden brown.

Add the leeks and sauté until the leeks are well coated with the oil (about 1-2 minutes).

Pour lemon juice into the saucepan. Put the lid on the saucepan. Sauté the leeks gently until they begin to soften and just barely beginning to colour.

Add drained rice, salt, sugar, hot water, stir gently with a wooden spoon. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat to low, and simmer until most of the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender.

Remove from the heat and let it stand for 10 minutes.

Have a good appetite!