An Essential Course, A Category of its Own in Turkish Cooking: Olive Oil Dishes

Turkish cuisine is the only cuisine in the world, that has a unique category dedicated to dishes made with olive oil. “Olive Oil Dishes” or “Zeytinyağlılar” in Turkish are healthy and vegetarian side dishes that can be served with anything from lamb to chicken or decorate a rich mezze table for a meal to be enjoyed for hours. Foods of Turkey is pleased to announced its new recipe series dedicated to “olive oil dishes” of Turkish cuisine.

Olive Oil Favorites from Turkey
Turkish cuisine features a lot of vegetarian dishes cooked with tasty Turkish olive oil.  Here are some classics we have already featured on Foods of Turkey:
Memorable from trips to the homeland! Now that it is also the season for artichokes, don’t let it go by without trying this recipe.
Shakshuka (Fried Vegetables with Garlic Yogurt and Tomato Sauce)
Shiny, colorful and fried vegetables like peppers and eggplants are not the surprise here! It is the tasty sauce!
Leeks with Rice
Isn’t time you gave leeks a chance? Mixed with rice, sauteed in olive oil, they are sure to please, in this healthy dish. 
Green Beans in Olive Oil
A delicate dish, served cold or at room temperature, a classic indeed!../../2009/5/27_Recipe__Aah,_Aah,_Artichokes.html../1/3_Recipe__Shakshuka_%28Fried_Eggplants,_Peppers_in_Sauce%29.html../1/3_Recipe__Shakshuka_%28Fried_Eggplants,_Peppers_in_Sauce%29.html../../2009/9/11_Recipe__Easy_Leeks.html../../2009/6/11_Recipe__Green_Beans_in_Olive_Oil.html../../../Eat.htmlshapeimage_3_link_0shapeimage_3_link_1shapeimage_3_link_2shapeimage_3_link_3shapeimage_3_link_4
Also Read
Make sure to also read a tasty interview on Turkish olive oil with Rengin Suar, a Turkish professional olive oil taster. Rengin is from Ayvalik, a town on the Aegean and internationally famous for its olive oil.  ../../../../Shop/Entries/2011/4/22_Turkish_Olive_Oil__An_Interview.html


Grapes leaves (Fresh or canned/jarred)

For the stuffing

Olive oil (of course!) (3/4 cup)

Rice (measure 1 tbsp for 2 sarma’s)

Onions (1)

Tomato (1)

Pine nuts (2 tbsp)


Cinnamon (1 tsp)

Allspice (1 tsp)

Currants (1 tbsp) (Optional)

Mint (dried or fresh) (Optional)

Dill (Optional)

Sugar (1 tsp) (Optional)

Lemon juice (2 tbsp)

Salt and pepper to taste

Master Eggplant Recipe

“Imam Fainted!” He had every right to do so. This is heavenly and healthy all at once! This is the master eggplant recipe of them all.

Dolma Tips

  1. Use the optional herbs if you like, but don’t overwhelm your dish with too much.

  2. For best measurement, assume one tablespoon full of rice makes two pieces of sarma.

  3. Dolma or sarma also cooks wonderfully in a pressure cooker. It takes 7 minutes exactly but make sure to reduce the amount of water you use and put very little in the cooker.