When the winter comes two traditional and historic drinks, Salep and Boza, color up the cold grey days. Salep with its ancient medical history warms you up. Boza with its nutritious thick texture cools you down. If you happen to be in Istanbul during winter, these drinks most definitely offer a different experience to your taste buds.
History and Recipe of Special Turkish Winter Drinks
Boza is one of the oldest Turkish beverages, and is made from fermented grains. In Turkey mostly durum wheat is used and in other countries corn, barley, rye, oats, wheat, buckwheat... It contains nutritious values like protein, calcium, iron, zinc, phosphorus, thiamine, riboflavin, and niacin. It gives your stomach a full feeling, so it s better not to drink Boza during or right before your meal.
Central Asian Turks began to make Boza in the 10th century. In the 16th century Boza was banned by Sultan Selim II because of the opium used in the mixture. Also in the 17th century, Boza got its share from the alcoholic drinks prohibition of Sultan Mehmet IV since excessive fermentation caused a higher alcoholic level.
In the 17th century Turkish traveler Evliya Celebi reported that Boza was largely drunk by janissaries in the army and it contained a low level of alcohol. So, it was tolerated due to its warming and strengthening effect for the soldiers.
In the 19th century, the sweet and non-alcoholic version became popular at the Ottoman Palace, and also in society. Haci Sadik Bey is the founder of today s most well-known Boza brand Vefa.
In 1870 he emigrated from Albania and settled in the Vefa district in Istanbul. He reinterpreted the thin and sour Boza. His version was thicker, less tart, and became a brand in 1876. Today the brand still produces Boza between October and April.
Orchids have fascinated mankind for more than 3000 years, not only with its aesthetic beauty but also with its medical might. The idea of making a drink out of this enchanting flower belongs to Turks, thanks to their religious belief. In the 8th century, Turkish people converted to Islam. According to the belief, they are not allowed to drink alcoholic beverages. So they came up with the idea of Salep, a hot milky drink to warm you up during the cold winters.
Tubers of wild orchids are washed, boiled, dried and finally grinded into flour. This is the essence of this soft and warming, but also medical drink. The healing power of Salep comes from glucomannan, which heals respiratory problems like bronchitis and cough. It empowers the heart and the mind, stops diarrhea and warms up the body. Especially if it s consumed with ginger and/or cinnamon, its effect is amplified.
Cup of Salep. This precious flower grows almost everywhere in Turkey, and there are lots of varieties. Yet, some varieties are facing extinction. To get 1 kilo of Salep flour, more than 1000 orchid tubers are pulled out of the soil. And it takes up to 7 or 8 years for the orchid s tubers to grow sufficiently to use for Salep production. Therefore, export of Salep is prohibited. However, instant versions with Salep flavor are exported.
It is easy to make Salep at home...as long as you can get the Salep flour. For six people, mix 2 tea spoons of Salep flour with 2,5 tea spoons of sugar. Slowly add 3,5 glasses of cold milk, and stir. Finally boil the mixture while stirring on low fire for 10 to 15 minutes. Serve hot in a cup dusting with grinded cinnamon, nutmeg or ginger on top.
News from Turkey
Lujo Hotel Bodrum
Opening in April 2018, the Lujo Hotel Bodrum is a luxury resort set alongside three private stretches of beach on Turkey s Mediterranean shore. In the grounds of the hotel, guests will find an array of luxurious facilities and services, as well as attractive gardens and pool areas. For families, couples and groups of friends in search of a bit of luxury, this hotel is perfect.
With luxurious decoration and private balconies, the rooms at this hotel are exclusive and comfortable. Each one features a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, hire safe, Nespresso machine, iron and air conditioning.
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The Bodrum Edition Premiering 2018
The Bodrum EDITION is located just 3 kilometers from Palmarina in Yalikavak at the western point of the Bodrum peninsula.
The hotel features 102 guest rooms, suites and villas, most with views of the Aegean Sea-some with private pools, balconies and gardens. The hotel s design includes an Infinity pool, garden lounge, state-of-the art spa facilities with Turkish Hammam and fitness center, kids club and an exclusive beach club with jetty that houses private cabanas.
Unique food and beverage outlets include 2 bars, gourmet specialty grill overlooking the bay, night club, and an all-day casual dining venue. The hotel also has over 12,900 sq. ft.-1200 sq. m. of indoor/outdoor meeting and event space including meeting studios, a ballroom and boardroom.
The Istanbul Naval Museum
The Istanbul Naval Museum is a national naval museum, located at Besiktas district of Istanbul. It was established in 1897 by the Ottoman Minister of Navy Bozcaadali Hasan Husnu Pasha.
The museum contains an important collection of military artifacts pertaining to the Ottoman Navy. In the field of maritime, it is Turkey s largest museum, with a great variety of collections. Around 20,000 pieces are present in its collection. Being connected to the Turkish Navy-Command in Turkey, it is also the country s first military museum.
A new exhibition building was constructed. The construction lasted five years, and the building was reopened on October 4, 2013. It has two stories in addition a basement, all covering 20,000 m2 (220,000 sq ft).
The basement consists of diverse items like figureheads, ornaments of naval ships, ship models and pieces of the Byzantine chain used to block entrance of enemy ships into the Golden Horn. In the first and second floors, a great number of imperial and other caiques are exhibited.
Many exhibition items underwent special restoration and conservation works due to deformation of the raw materials caused by heat, light, humidity, atmospheric conditions, vandalism and other factors.
Rent the museum for private function take your Dinner in between the Ottoman Ships (Kadirga).
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Culture And History
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