The fourth Yashim adventure sees him back in Istanbul, and in the sultan’s harem. It’s a winter book, which includes plenty of seasonal dishes, and the odalisques drinking soup by a fire, under a thick quilt.
“‘One by one, along the edge of the Golden Horn, the little fishing boats drawn up on the strand lit their lamps as dusk descended over the Bosphorus. Dark figures crouched beneath the boats’ prows, tending the little braziers where they cooked their fish: mackerel, mostly, headed, gutted and then split apart to sizzle for a few minutes over the glowing charcoal. The cold, damp air reeked of the oil that dripped into the fires.