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Classic Turkish Cooking

By Ghillie Basan

Published 1995

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There are sweet peppers and hot peppers. The sweetest are the large red and yellow bell-shaped peppers, which are delicious grilled. The small green bell peppers are picked unripe as, thinner-skinned, they are ideal for stuffing with rice and minced meat. Similarly, small red bell peppers from the southeast of Turkey are hung up and dried, which makes them easier to stuff once reconstituted in water. The pale-green, sweetly perfumed çarliston biber, shaped like Turkish slippers, are best grilled or fried whole and served with garlic flavoured yogurt, kızarmış biber, pickled whole, or sliced into a refreshing salad. The long, twisted bright-green and red chilli peppers, ranging from pleasantly to uncomfortably hot, are chopped into salads or grilled with kebabs. The tiny green and red match-stick chillies from the south and southeast can be breathlessly hot - they are used sparingly in meat and fish dishes, or pickled. And long strings of mild, horn-shaped chillies from the south and southeast are hung up to dry, roughly chopped, and then crushed or ground into the ubiquitous spice, kırmızı biber.