Lunch aboard a gulet | Luxury yacht charter experience

Lunch aboard a gulet

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There are dozens of recipes that are classed as “zeytinyagli”, or “…slow cooked in olive oil” — and these provide the backbone for the summertime lunch. Imagine a type of dish which coaxes every smidgen of flavour out of fresh green beans, okra, celeriac, artichoke, aubergine, tomatoes and courgettes - and you have the gist of a “zeytinyagli” dish.

In our experience, the colour and variety at lunchtime exceeds most people's expectations and so you will likely see a different kind of salad each day, followed by a hot starter - perhaps zucchini fritters served with a garlicky yoghurt sauce, or a triangle-shaped "pachanga burek" with a stuffing of pastrami and cheese, or the ever-popular “sigara burek” - deep fried, rolled fingers of pastry stuffed with a variety of herbs and cheeses.

The main course is served according to your preferences, and may be as light as a piece of grilled fish with a garnish of fresh rocket leaves, or perhaps some oven-baked chicken with a side of herbed roast potatoes and summer vegetables. Another light lunch is grilled octopus, or garlic prawns, prepared to local recipes and served with your choice of vegetables. A chef in a galley will enjoy cooking up hot pilavs (Turkish rice dishes) to accompany your main, and if you are a fan of pasta, you may opt for pasta dishes which are prepared with a variety of mouthwatering sauces.

For a lighter option, fresh Turkish appetisers, known as “Meze” are as abundant as the flavours that abound in the Mediterranean, and typically feature fresh vegetables such as green beans, okra, pinto beans, aubergine, tomatoes and courgettes, as well as truly delicious flavours such as purslane with a garlicky yoghurt dressing or sea samphire served simply with a dressing of garlic and lemon. Simple mezes include plates of black or green olives and well-aged crumbly cheeses, including “tulum”, over which black cumin seeds have been sprinkled. Bread belongs to every mealtime table in Turkey and so you’ll likely see it in every shape and variety, from fresh and springy to lightly toasted and crunchy.

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