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Turkish cuisine inherited its Ottoman heritage which could be described as a fusion and refinement of Turkic, Arabic, Persian and Greek cuisines. Ottomans fused various culinary traditions of their realm, with influences from Middle Eastern cuisines, along with traditional Turkic elements from Central Asia such as Yogurt. As a result, the Ottoman Empire created a vast array of very technical dishes. Furthermore, it can be observed that various regions of the Ottoman Empire contain bits and pieces of the vast Ottoman dishes.
The best flavored white cheeses and yogurt are prepared from sheep milk. Although rice, which is called pilav, is the essential side dish of many foods, bulgur pilav? (prepared from pounded wheat: bulgur which is used in a number of Turkish specialities) can also be used for the same purpose.
The bread is prepared from wheat, barley or corn. Pide (broad, round and flat kind of bread made of wheat) and tand?r ekme?i (baked on the inner walls of a round oven called tand?r) are some examples for authentic types of bread in Turkish cuisine. Another type of bread commonly eaten in Turkey is simit (or "gevrek"). It is a quick snack which is a ring-shaped bread covered with sesame seeds. Simits are eaten either plain or with cheese or jelly.
Frequently used ingredients in Turkish dishes include eggplant, green pepper, onion, lentil, bean, tomato, garlic, and cucumber. Grape, apricot, cherry, melon, fig, lemon, pistachio, pine nut, almond, hazelnut, watermelon, and walnut are among the most abundantly used fruits and nuts. As the variety can be observed in the Spice Bazaar (M?s?r Çar??s?), spices have a special place in the Turkish cuisine. Preferred spices and herbs are parsley, cumin, pepper, paprika, mint, oregano and thyme.
For more info: www.wikipedia.org