Saturday, January 17, 2009

Turkish Delight

Last month a new restaurant opened in the Sanlitun area, near the Tuanjiehu subway station.

It has the strange name of Turkish Mum, but the owner explained it was better to be straightforward about the kind of food and also show that it's home-cooking but in a restaurant.

The decor is reminiscent of the previous French dining establishment, with European-style mouldings on the ceilings and a kind of living room area off to the side complete with faux fireplace.

I've now been to the restaurant twice and thoroughly enjoy the dishes here which my friend says is quite authentic as he loves Turkish food.

The hummus is a smooth texture that's slightly runny, while the tabouleh is refreshing and light with the dash of lemon juice to tart up the finely diced parsley and bulger wheat.

Another good starter especially on a cold winter's day is the lentil soup, the lentils blended smooth in an almost creamy soup.

Some mains to enjoy are the lamb stew with okra, skewers of lamb, cod and beef patties, and the black cod poached in parchment paper. It's baked with fennel leaves, tomatoes, lemon and onions. Pity the cod is frozen, but otherwise delicious.

The desserts are pretty good -- and in thoughtful portions. The baklava isn't too sweet, but served in a small piece, and the pumpkin pie too is a small slice for those with a tiny bit of room left. The milk pudding isn't too sweet either, but would be better mixed with some vanilla in it.

The prices are pretty good too, just too bad there isn't enough buzz around this place to bring more diners in.

Or maybe I should keep this my own dining secret in Sanlitun.

Turkish Mum
Gongti bei lu 3-3

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