Saturday, July 18, 2009

Me and the White Witch

I want to learn to make these. Turkish Delight.
I don't have much of a sweet tooth, but Narnia... Had to try 'em.
We picked up a little sampler pack in Berkeley: Lemon, orange and rose. The rose is spectacular (and Cranky didn't care for it, so lucky me).
I couldn't tell you the manufacturer, because the store seems to have split up larger boxes and repackaged them. But (and honestly, the picture is so old, I sort of forget) I think the version in the photo was made in New Zealand, and I'm convincing myself without any proof that it was made by the person who crafted the Turkish Delight for the movie! It makes me feel so famous, almost like stealing a kiss from Mr. Tumnus. Six degrees of delectation.
I recently bought a couple hunks of the stuff from a local Middle Eastern restaurant. Shudder. It was so clearly made with artificial flavorings, and gaudily tinted with food color. So I must make my own.
The manufacturer of the handmade candies featured in the film dropped a comment over on Sam's long-ago post about making Turkish Delight (ooh, one degree closer), and says the true recipe doesn't use any gelatine. So I have gotten a free lesson from a master. And I did find a couple of recipes online from — Narnia nuts! (Not pistachios. I mean kooks.)
I'm getting over a little bug right now, but I'm going to finally tackle 'em.
This way for your num-nums.

18 comments:

dancingmorganmouse said...

I get mine from here . My favourite is rose & pistachio coconut, wonderful stuff. But only a few pieces at a time.

The Spiteful Chef said...

If you can figure this out, will you post the recipe? I'd LOVE to be able to do this at home, since I've lusted for Turkish Delight since I was 5 and read C.S. Lewis for the first time. LUSTED. But I've never had it. I am certain I'd enjoy it, since I'll devour anything with sugar.

Greg said...

A new food discovery for me. What is the consistency?

namastenancy said...

In Turkish, it's called LOKUM and it's utterly delicious when made right. I don't make mine but buy it from a little Middle Eastern grocery store on the edge of the Tenderloin at Sutter and Larkin. But the most authentic looking recipe that I've found on line is this one: http://mideastfood.about.com/od/dessertssweetspastries/r/turkishdelight.htm

cookiecrumb said...

Mouse: I will go see your dealer. I am so new to this stuff, I'm afraid of coconut and pistachio.

Spiteful: Since I don't know when I'm going to try, let me offer this website.

http://www.buzzle.com/articles/turkish-delight-recipe.html

It looks like a recipe I would use.

Greg: It's like a much softer gummi bear, although that doesn't do it any service. You eat a piece about an inch square, dusted with powdered sugar, and then you beg the White Witch for more. And she screams at you, but you are too stupid or greedy to sense the alarm. Yum!

cookiecrumb said...

Nancy: Good. I like the recipes that have you cook the mixture to a golden color. I should point out that it's unclear in that recipe you are using TWO separate saucepans. Otherwise, peachy! Thanks.

Spitey, are you listening?

J-in-Wales said...

I haven't made this myself, but a friend has. Her advice: make sure you put the cooling tray on a very, very flat surface - the stuff 'crept' out of the tray during the course of the night (like a slimy pink slinky), off the counter and welded itself to the carpet. Thus providing an excellent demonstration of thixotropic flow!

namastenancy said...

If I were the one doing the cooking, you can be sure that I'd use every pan in my kitchen and drape the whole place with strings of sugar syrup. I am NOT a clean cook. The little Middle Eastern store that I was talking about has all sorts of syrups for flavoring dishes like this. I would imagine that you could find similar things wherever there is a large Middle Eastern/Indian presence - say Berkeley with all it's shops selling Indian goods? I prefer orange flavoring over the rose but I wouldn't turn down either if offered. I remember when we lived in Turkey; you'd get plates of Lokum, pastries, puddings sprinkled with nuts and tiny cups of Turkish coffee. My favorite site for Turkish recipes is Binnur's Turkish cookbook on line; they don't have a recipe for Lokum but there a lot of other good stuff which you might find useful as you work toward a more healthy diet for yourself:
http://www.turkishcookbook.com/

Rabacal said...

In Canada, they have a candy bar called Nestle's Big Turk and it is chocolate covered Turkish Delight. It's my favorite and I have been known to order it by the case! :)

cookiecrumb said...

J-in-Wales: Which term do I like better, thixotropic (which means "flows toward the carpet") or slimy pink slinky?
The latter.
Thanks for the advice. I've been doing some snooping around and it looks like I might not attain success right off the bat.

Nancy: Oh, boy. Thanks for the link to an online Turkish cookbook. Such good eating. Just so you know, I traced the Narnia handcrafter, and they use wheat starch! Oh Noes!
http://www.loukoumi.co.nz/ingredients/

Rabacal: No! That's just wrong! But it's so... right. Wow. Can't blame ya. :)

marni said...

I've secretly been hanging on every word for awhile now. So glad I found you! I'll take sugar, in almost any form...Marni

cookiecrumb said...

Hi, Marni! My new BFF. Me, I'm not all that into sweets, so you caught me on the perfect day (and I'm really going to do this recipe myself.)

Sweet Bird said...

Never tried it, always wanted to. Especially after reading and watching Narnia as a child, and then again in the remake as an adult.

I'm worried they'd be too sweet though...

Marianne Hendricks said...

A Washington company makes a lot of different flavors of turkish delight. I've been eating Aplets and Cotlets since I was a kid. http://www.libertyorchards.com/category/Turkish_Delights

cookiecrumb said...

They're sweet, Sweet Birdie. They're candy. Not even as sweet as a lollipop, though, kinda sophisticated I think.

cookiecrumb said...

Marianne: Big fat d'oh! I've always loved Aplets and Cotlets. Just never figured out that they are, in fact, Turkish Delight. Fantastic! Thanks.

dancingmorganmouse said...

Cookie, they do plain too ... they will be gentle with you, promise!

cookiecrumb said...

Mouse: Yes, I perused their menu. It is a thing of beauty, all Arabian Nights and perfumed dreams.