Turkish Cuisine in Republic Period
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Turkish Cuisine in Republic Period*

These conventions played a key role in introducing Turkish cuisine outside of Turkey. Famous editor Jill Norman, have published a  Turkish cookbook that was widely popular in England. The experts who became more familiar with Turkish cuisine, have returned to their countries and wrote praises for Turkish cuisine and caused many others to visit Turkey for culinary purposes. Claudia Roden mentioned; “Feyci Halıcı and his sister Nevin Halıcı have made Konya the center of gastronomical wake-up” in her latest book.

These events have also led to Konya Köşk Lokantası (Konya Köşk Restaurant), a regional restaurant, to appear in the list of top 10 restaurants in 2003’s Lonley Planet guide book. These activites that started in Konya caused a revival in Turkish cooking. The cookbooks written in the Ottoman period were translated into modern Turkish. In certain cities in Anatolia, there were cuisine related publications and cooking competitions to introduce the culinary culture. 

During Republic period, the larger scale newspapers of Istanbul started creating food columns. The food writing that started with Atilla Dorsay continued with Tuğrul Şavkay. In the last few years food and nutrition related articles and columns started to appear in almost every newspaper on a weekly basis. These writings were about general nutrition and diets as well as topics on food and kitchen. From time to time they can be seen as just recipes as well.  Recipe books increased especially in the last few years. To commemorate the 700th Anniversary of Ottomans, some private and public institutions published cookbooks. Also in 2005, “Sufi Cuisine” book was published in London. Artun Ünsal started publishing books on single ingredients such as olives, cheese, simit (round sesame bread) which happen to be very valuable sources.  Guide books, memory books, and books on food culture also started to get published. Among these the ones that are quite interesting are Selim İleri’s book “The only lobster of your household” (Evinizin Tek İstakozu) , Murat Belge’s book “Food Culture” (Yemek Kültürü), İlhan Eksen’s books “Drinking Responsibly and Rakı Mezes” (Dengeli Demlenme ve Rakı Mezeleri), “Multicultured İstanbul Kitchen” (Çok Kültürlü İstanbul Mutfağı) and many more books on food.

In television, morning shows and women’s shows that air every day started to feature recipes and cooking demonstrations. These demonstrations were done by professional cooks or by models with the help of consultants. There are also TV shows, such as Mehmet Yaşin’s program, where he travels around Anatolia and tastes the regional cuisine in different restaurants.

There are some famous chefs of Republic, who have done a lot for the promotion of Turkish cuisine. Necip Ertürk, who has published a series of books that explain Turkish cuisine and recipes explicitly. Following him, Vedat Başaran, who has acclaimed fame both nationally and internationally for his studies and application of Ottoman period and classical Turkish cuisine. He had created wonderful dishes with beautiful plate designs and served at many protocol dinners.  Rasim Özkanca, who has created excellent restaurants, the most commonly known is Borsa, have been very successful in the business. 

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