Sweet History of Turkish Delight

Sweet History of Turkish Delight

Turkish delight, belonging to one of the richest cuisines in the world, is derived from a word that means sözcük ‘relieving the throat’ in Arabic. In Turkish culture, the importance given to dessert can be understood by the use of sentences such as “eat sweet, say sweet’’.

About six hundred years, this traditional taste has been produced in Turkey, which emerged in the fifteenth century, and is known to enter the Ottoman palace in the seventeenth century. In the eighteenth century, Turkish delight was introduced to the world by travelers and became known as ’Turkish Delight’. Turkish delight, which has a special place for Turks, is recognized by almost every country in the world. Turkish delight is known as ‘Rahat’ in Romania, ‘Delicia Turca’ in Brazil and ‘Loukoumi’ in Greece. This taste, which dates back to the Ottoman cuisine, is increasing throughout the world.

After the travels, it is among the Turkish customs to bring small gifts to the household or dear friends. Turkish delight is also among the ones that can be bought as souvenir food on the way home. Domestic and foreign tourists returning from domestic or foreign trips buy these colorful, delicious delight as a gift to their loved ones, from airports, recreational facilities or gift shops in the bus station.

Presentation of Turkish Delight

Turkish delight is famous for being a palace dessert. Therefore, it is usually served in porcelain, silver, glass or copper treats since it is a dessert that requires extra care in its presentation. It is believed that offering a loved dessert to the guests shows the value given to the guest in Turkish culture and increases the position of the host. Turkish delight is known as one of the indispensable ones of Turkish people during holidays, family and friendly visits and pleasant conversations. Turkish delight, which is not missing in their homes, can be served to the guests, usually next to the coffee or alone for mouth sweetening.

How Traditional Turkish Delight Is Made?

The main materials used in the construction of Turkish delight, known as the indispensable of Turkish Ottoman sultans; water, starch, citric acid and sugar. Honey or molasses are used instead of granulated sugar in organic ones. A well-made delight does not contain gelatin or almonds to ensure hardening. It is known that the consistency is provided by the skill of the person cooking, and the amount of the ingredients are very important. The sugar is boiled until it dissolves in water. Citric acid and starch are expected to dissolve in a separate container. The dissolved mixture is added to the sugar water and boiled for a while. Gradually the consistency of the delight began to take intensity, with a nice smell of musk paste and rose water is added. After being thoroughly mixed, the delight is taken from the fire and blended with flavors or nuts according to its type and made ready for other operations. The delight is kept in starchy containers for about twenty hours to create a sticky consistency. A quality delight should be elastic and leave a slippery, soft feeling in the mouth. Turkish delight is poured into a marble counter and cut into strips when it cools and mixed with powdered sugar so that they do not stick together. 

All Sorts of Delight

Traditional Turkish delight can be made with almost every aroma with different production methods in order to appeal to every taste. This dessert, which fascinates everyone with its colors and images, is carefully prepared by experienced people. Bird delight, sesame, orange, simple pistachio croquant, pomegranate, rose leaf, walnut, hazelnut, double roasted, king delight, amulet delight, mint, almond, gum mastic, lemon, coconut, creamy, pistachio, chocolate, etc. delicious delights are sold in ornate packaging in almost every market.

Benefits of Turkish Delight

Although Turkish delight does not sound very healthy because it contains, sugar and starch, it actually has a lot of benefits. In 100 grams, 89 g carbohydrates, 0.19 g fat, 19 mg potassium, 0.2 g protein, 5 mg calcium and 0.1 mg iron is found. As it is known that over consumption of foods containing sugar like any food is known to be harmful, the benefits of Turkish delight in proper consumption are listed as follows;

  •  Delight, which helps reduce tonsillitis, as it means relieving the throat, is known to be effective in healing this condition in a short time.
  • It is seen as a great remedy for wounds and pimples.
  • High carbohydrate content is considered for the benefit of kidney patients.
  • With the rapid burning of the calorie into energy, it becomes an energy tank.

It helps to eliminate harmful substances caused by excessive protein consumption.


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