TURKS TAKE THEIR BREAKFAST VERY SERIOUSLY. AND THIS IS THE EGG STAPLE IN ANY TURKISH BREKKIE.
I had the privilege of learning how to make menemen from Celal Ataman, who co-owns Kale Cafe in Istanbul. A breakfast institution in this Turkish metropolis, Kale has been around since the 1980s. And Celal is a legend!
There are many ways to make menemen. Apart from the eggs, tomato and chillis, you can add anything else you like.
HERE’S MY TAKE:
Serves 2. This is usually made in a small pan with a cover.
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1-2 chillies, sliced
- 1 tomato roughly chopped (Turks peel the skin of tomatoes, but you don’t need to)
- 2 eggs
- 2 tbsp feta cheese (you can use more or less, depending on taste)
- 2 tbsp loosely grated gruyere cheese (or any other cheese)
- salt to taste
- handful of bresaola or sausage. Turks use a beef cured with garlic. (obviously, avoid meat for vegetarian version)
*Don’t forget to scroll down for your Savory Sounds cooking soundtrack.
- Put the tomatoes and chillis in a pan with the butter. Put it on the stove, cover and allow the mixture to saute for 5 minutes.
- Take the pan off the heat. Mash up the tomatoes with a fork.
- Put the pan back on the heat. Crack the eggs over the mixture. Use a fork to scramble the mixture. Keep moving the the mixture around.
- Throw in your cheese and bresaola. Give it one good mix.
- Cover and let it sit for 2-5 more minutes.
- Sprinkle salt to taste. The cheese and bresaola will have plenty of salt, so be careful not to over-season. Serve.
It’s rustic and simple, but packed with flavor.Enjoy!
I SWEAR THIS IS WHAT TURKS LISTEN TO, DRIVING ALONG THE BOSPHORUS.
And here’s one from Berlin duo Hotlane that’s actually from last summer, but it’s a good one for your warm weather drives: