The Turkish Period

Appears in
Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets

By Darra Goldstein

Published 2015

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Already in the thirteenth century, Arab cuisine had started to show the influence of the Turks who had been moving into the region from Central Asia, first as mercenary soldiers, then as rulers. Along with Turkish breads and pastas, a few sweets appeared in the Arab cookbooks. One was qarni yārūq (split belly), which was made by kneading flour and water as if for noodles but with the addition of some melted butter. This rich paste was rolled out thin, cut into strips, and fried crisp. Dressed with syrup and pistachios, it was like a slightly crumbly, deconstructed baklava. See baklava.