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Turkish delight and mystery

IN this week's culinary show I strolled across the street from the Sweden Pavilion to the Turkey Pavilion for lunch, and got a warm welcome from pavilion director Suat Tunc.

The Turkish Restaurant serves the ancient Turkish dish "Iskender kebab." Before it arrived I went into the kitchen to have a look at how they prepare the dish. I found an enormous chunk of meat (a mixture of beef and lamb) spinning around on a vertical spit roast. I tried to help the chef cut some slices but I failed to cut very thin time after time and realized it was best to give the tools back to the pro.

As I returned to the table I saw my plate of kebab waiting. The meat was served on top of pieces of bread together with rice and tomato sauce. The bread soaked up the sauce, which made it soft and spongy. I put kebab, bread and rice onto my fork and rushed it to my mouth. I am no stranger to kebab, but the taste seemed more authentic here at the Turkey Pavilion than ever before. The dish was very well accompanied with a good Turkish Efes beer.

The kebab dish may not be a treat to the eye, but it is most certainly a treat for your taste buds. After finishing the "Iskender kebab," I was shown to the cafe where I was given a cup of Turkish coffee and introduced to a fortune teller. The Turkish coffee is the size of an espresso but has the taste of 10. When only coffee grounds were left in my cup, the fortune teller told me to put the saucer upside down on the top of the cup and flip it over. Then she gazed into the cup and read my future. Apparently I have dreams about Africa and/or South America and she also told me that things will pretty much sort themselves out. When the mysterious fortune telling session was over I toured the pavilion. The exhibition takes you far back in time and describes the early relations between China and Turkey. After all this mystery and ancient history I felt both calm and confused when I left the pavilion. I mean, how can somebody tell you about the future by looking at coffee grounds? I guess we will have to wait and see ...

That's all for this time. For more photos and video visit

Stay hungry!


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