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10 Turkish Street Foods Every Visitor Must Try

10 Turkish Street Foods Every Visitor Must Try

Turkey’s culinary landscape is rich and diverse in flavor and influences and its street food is no exception. Kebab and doner might be the most well-known street food from Turkey, but there is plenty of other options that go beyond the globally-recognized grilled meat. From bite-sized pasteries to small meals, there is something for every appetite. Easy on the wallet and filling, the following dishes are a great example of the variety that Turkish street eats provide.

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    Simit

    The Turkish equivalent of an American bagel, this freshly baked, sesame-encrusted breakfast staple is commonly embraced as a morning meal-to-go. There are several different variations, including a hard outer crust and its softer counterpart. For a more substantial start to your day, ask for beyaz peynir (white cheese) as a hearty addition.

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      Durum

      A close cousin of the doner and kebab, this versatile wrap is delicious as a midday meal or a late night snack after an evening out. Chicken and beef are common options for the savory filling, along with some grilled peppers and tomatoes. To find nearby vendors, just follow the scent of spiced meat on an open grill. Be sure to specify the level of spiciness if you do not want to be in for an unpleasant surprise.

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        Midye Dolma

        These ubiquitous mussels served on a half-shell and a bed of spicy rice with a squeeze of lemon are not to be missed. Look for midye dolma stands that have a high turnover rate to avoid food-born illnesses that can result from perishable seafood like these mussels. Make sure to pace yourself, as the rice is surprisingly filling.

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          Kokorec

          A popular late-night eat, these grilled, spiced lamb intestines are served in sandwich form on either a half or quarter loaf of bread. This greasy delicacy is understandably not for everyone, but if you are feeling adventurous this is the dish is not to be missed.

          Kumpir

            Kumpir

            This super-charged baked potato is a masterpiece all in its own right and with all the toppings offered, there are endless ways to construct it depending on personal preference. With choices like pickled beets, black and green olives, yogurt, you are bound to find something that will suit your taste buds.

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              Tavuk pilav

              This dish of chicken and rice may be simple in its ingredients, but does not disappoint in flavor. For a cheap and filling meal that many Turks embrace as their midday meal, make sure not pass up an opportunity to try this national favorite.

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                Borek

                This savory pastry filled with cheese, spinach and/or meat makes the perfect snack with a cup of steaming hot Turkish tea. There are many variations to this snack and it’s highly suggested that you try them all.

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                  Lahmacun

                  A dish often referred to as “Turkish pizza,” lahmacun is comprised out of a thin dough with minced meat, onions and red peppers on top. Make sure to squeeze some lemon on it and then wrap it up and eat it with your hands. Served with cold ayran (salty yogurt drink) it makes for a perfect in-between meals pick-me-up.

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                    Sutlu Misir

                    Often seen being sold from street carts in the warmer months, freshly boiled corn sprinkled with spices is a Turkish treat that is not to be missed. There are also grilled versions of corn on the cob that are equally as delicious.

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                      Balik ekmek

                      The translation of this sandwich is “fish bread,” which is a perfect, if literal translation of this tasty treat. Stuffed between a fresh baguette is a grilled fish, which provides a healthy, filling snack or light meal. Make sure to get a balik ekmek off of a docked boat, since they are known to have the freshest catch.

                      Featured photo credit: Flicker via flickr.com

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                      Last Updated on July 10, 2020

                      How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

                      How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

                      We all have them—those hurtful, frustrating, offensive, manipulative people in our lives. No matter how hard we try to surround ourselves with positive and kind people, there will always be those who will disrespect, insult, berate, and misuse you if we allow them to.

                      We may, for a variety of reasons, not be able to avoid them, but we can determine how we interact with them and how we allow them to interact with us.

                      So, how to take control of your life and stop being pushed around?

                      Learning to set clear firm boundaries with the people in our lives at work and in our personal lives is the best way to protect ourselves from the negative effects of this kind of behavior.

                      What Boundaries Are (And What They’re Not)

                      Boundaries are limits

                      —they are not threats or ultimatums. Boundaries inform or teach. They are not a form of punishment.

                      Boundaries are firm lines—determined by you—which cannot be crossed by those around you. They are guidelines for how you will allow others to treat you and what kind of behaviors you will expect.

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                      Healthy personal boundaries help protect you from physical or emotional pain. You may also need to set firm boundaries at work to ensure you and your time are not disrespected. Don’t allow others to take advantage of your kindness and generosity.

                      Clear boundaries communicate to others that you demand respect and consideration—that you are willing to stand up for yourself and that you will not be a doormat for anyone. They are a “no trespassing” sign that makes it very clear when a line has been crossed and that there will be consequences for doing so.

                      Boundaries are not set with the intention of changing other people. They may change how people interact with you, but they are more about enforcing your needs than attempting to change the general behavior and attitude of others.

                      How to Establish Boundaries and Take Control of Your Life

                      Here are some ways that you can establish boundaries and take control of your life.

                      1. Self-Awareness Comes First

                      Before you can establish boundaries with others, you first need to understand what your needs are.

                      You are entitled to respect. You have the right to protect yourself from inappropriate or offensive behavior. Setting boundaries is a way of honoring your needs.

                      To set appropriate boundaries, you need to be clear about what healthy behaviors look like—what healthy relationships look like.

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                      You first have to become more aware of your feelings and honest with yourself about your expectations and what you feel is appropriate behavior:

                      • Where do you need to establish better boundaries?
                      • When do you feel disrespected?
                      • When do you feel violated, frustrated, or angered by the behavior of others?
                      • In what situations do you feel you are being mistreated or taken advantage of?
                      • When do you want to be alone?
                      • How much space do you need?

                      You need to honor your own needs and boundaries before you can expect others to honor them. This allows you to take control of your life.

                      2. Clear Communication Is Essential

                      Inform others clearly and directly what your expectations are. It is essential to have clear communication if you want others to respect your boundaries. Explain in an honest and respectful tone what you find offensive or unacceptable.

                      Many people simply aren’t aware that they are behaving inappropriately. They may never have been taught proper manners or consideration for others.

                      3. Be Specific but Don’t Blame

                      Taking a blaming or punishing attitude automatically puts people on the defensive. People will not listen when they feel attacked. It’s part of human nature.

                      That said, you do not need to overexplain or defend yourself. Boundaries are not open to compromise.

                      Sample language:

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                      • “You may not…yell or raise your voice to me…”
                      • “I need…to be treated with respect…”
                      • “It’s not okay when…you take things from my desk without asking…”
                      • “I won’t…do your work…cover for you anymore…”
                      • “It’s not acceptable when…you ridicule or insult me…”
                      • “I am uncomfortable when…you use offensive language”
                      • “I will no longer be able to…lend you money…”

                      Being able to communicate these without sounding accusatory is essential if you want others to respect your boundaries so you can take control of your life.

                      4. Consequences Are Often Necessary

                      Determine what the appropriate consequences will be when boundaries are crossed. If it’s appropriate, be clear about those consequences upfront when communicating those boundaries to others.

                      Follow through. People won’t respect your boundaries if you don’t enforce them.

                      Standing our ground and forcing consequences doesn’t come easily to us. We want to be nice. We want people to like us, but we shouldn’t have to trade our self-respect to gain friends or to achieve success.

                      We may be tempted to let minor disrespect slide to avoid conflict, but as the familiar saying goes, “if you give people an inch, they’ll take a mile.”

                      It’s much easier to address offensive or inappropriate behavior now than to wait until that behavior has gotten completely out of hand.

                      It’s also important to remember that positive reinforcement is even more powerful than negative consequences. When people do alter the way they treat you, acknowledge it. Let people know that you notice and appreciate their efforts.

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                      Final Thoughts

                      Respect is always a valid reason for setting a boundary. Don’t defend yourself or your needs. Boundaries are often necessary to protect your time, your space, and your feelings. And these are essential if you want to take control of your life.

                      Start with the easiest boundaries first. Setting boundaries is a skill that needs to be practiced. Enlist support from others if necessary. Inform people immediately when they have crossed the line.

                      Don’t wait. Communicate politely and directly. Be clear about the consequences and follow them through.

                      The better you become at setting your own boundaries, the better you become at recognizing and respecting the boundaries of others.

                      Remember that establishing boundaries is your right. You are entitled to respect. You can’t control how other people behave, but you do have control over the way you allow people to treat you.

                      Learning to set boundaries is not always easy, but with time, it will become more comfortable. You may eventually find that boundaries become automatic and you no longer need to consciously set them.

                      They will simply become a natural extension of your self-respect.

                      Featured photo credit: Thomas Kelley via unsplash.com

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