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Almond Rose Turkish Delight and A Giveaway for Substituting Ingrediants

A certain ennui is settling over my kitchen. It could be that I'm just plain exhausted with new part  time hours working as a line cook for a well known caterer in addition to my day job.The hours there can be feast or famine, and lately its a feast, which leaves me exhausted.Imagine 16 hour days with your day job and then working the kitchen  for the love of it and to gain  practical experience. I confess I'm learning and hedging my bets at the same time. In these financial times, with job uncertainty, it's good to get any experience you can, as the more traditional jobs are scarce.Lately I have all these cooking plans for fun and by the time a quick dinner is made and Certain Someone and I are settled, I just drift away. Maybe it's  the heat too. Who knows, but I need my drive and inspiration back,soon.It happens to all of us from time to time.
Before I get to this weeks fun recipe of Turkish Delight,I want to talk about a little book that was just published and should be in every ones kitchen.
Substituting Ingredients by Becky Sue Epstein is a indispensable guide for the kitchen. In these lean times, its nice to have a book on hand that resolves a ingredient dilemma , without having to run to the store and spend yet more money.Upon reading this book you will find out how to find replacements for herbs, spices, fruits,and other essential ingredients, Becky Sue also includes recipes for mixes like Hot Cocoa to a Garam Masala, and ketchup.My favorite part of the book is the chapter on Household formulas. Becky Sue shows how to replace costly toxic chemicals with formulas made from household ingredients.I found this book simple,and easy to use. It will be well thumbed as I go about  my cooking and baking endeavors. I have one copy of this book to give away. Leave a comment at this end of this post and I will chose a winner next week.Comments close for entry July 3.

I received my copy of Dessert Professional Magazine last month and saw a recipe I knew I had to attempt at home.Turkish Delight! The recipe was excerpted from Chocolates and Confections by Peter P. Greweling of the Culinary Institute of America.His Turkish Delight looked like  clear solid perfection . I substituted out pistachios for what was on hand, slivered almonds.The slivered almonds stuck out and didn't  allow for a smooth cut. Buts that's the beauty of Turkish Delight, its many variations.I confess mine looks rather crude compared to the photo in Dessert Professional, but it was tasty . My only complaint is that the humidity caused my pieces to sweat after dusting the next day. The heat and humidity is extreme here in Chicago currently, so I wouldn't advise making this when humid. But I will be making it again.Here was an interesting thread on some other peoples experience making this particular recipe as well .
Turkish Delight or Lokum was created in response  by a crafty confectioner,Ali Muhiddin Hacı Bekir, for a sultan in the Ottoman Empire who tired of hard candy.Ali Muhiddins descendants still sell Rahat Lokums ( comfortable morsels) to this day in many variations . Turkish Delight become popular with the west through CS Lewis' The Lion The Witch and The Wardrobe.For those that are looking for a gummy type of confection , without the use of gelatin or animal products, this is the recipe for you. Turkish Delight gets its consistency from a mixture of cream of Tartar, corn starch,and sugar, The variations come with additions of nuts and flavors. Rose water is one of the most popular flavorings.For this recipe , which I adapted, I ramped up the almond and rose flavors.
Almond Rose Turkish Delight
adapted from the Turkish Delight Recipe in Chocolates and Confections  by Peter Greweling .*
Changes made where * appear.
Makes 9x13 inch slab
Sugar Syrup
(2lb)4 cups granulated sugar
(8oz)1 cup water
1tsp cream of tarter
Starch Paste
(4oz)1 cup Cornstarch
1 tsp Cream of Tarter
(24 oz)3 cups water
1 tsp rose water
1 tsp almond extract
a few drops of rose colored food coloring
1 cup slivered almonds
(2oz)1/2 cup Confectioners Sugar
(1oz)1/4 cup Cornstarch

Oil and line a 9x13 inch baking pan with plastic wrap.Use a neutral  non flavored vegetable oil.Lightly oil the top of the wrap as well.
In a 2 qt saucepan, combine sugar, water, and cream of tarter. Bring to a boil , cover and boil for 4 minutes without stirring.After 4 minutes, remove lid, and place a candy thermometer in. Continue cooking until the mixture reaches a temperature of 260F.Remove from heat and set aside.
In a 4 qt saucepan mix the ingredients for the starch paste (Cornstarch,Cream of tarter,and water).
Stir with a whisk over medium heat until the mixture starts to thicken and boil.The mixture will be thick and pasty,but continue to cook for 2-3 minutes.
Taking the sugar syrup from before, add it gradually in a stream to the starch paste while whisking on the heat.Bring the combined mixtures to a soft boil and continue to whisk on a lowered heat until the mixture is smooth and clear.Cook for 20-25 minutes.
Remove pot from the heat and stir in rose and almond flavors, coloring , and nuts.
Pour into the prepared pan and lay a piece of plastic wrap on top. Leave to cool overnight.
In a large bowl sift together the confectioners sugar and cornstarch to dust the candy pieces in in, Cut the candy and roll in mixture.
Store in airtight , dry temperature.

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bigj972 said...

Thank for the recipe, I can't wait to try it.

Deborah said...

I can see why you are so exhausted!! I'm not working 16 hour days, but sometimes it's still impossible to get dinner on the table. I have never had a Turkish Delight before, but they sure look tasty!

Niveditha said...

Thanks for the to have this sure sounds fun!!!

~~louise~~ said...

You GO Girl!!! But, please don't over do it, breathe:)

I adore Lokum and the thought of almonds sounds most appealing. I love the bite of history too. Who knew?

Thank you so much for sharing this recipe. It's a keeper. (Tabi would love the rosy color:)

P.S. The book sounds pretty darn handy but, please don't include me in the give-away. I've got one on the way, eventually:)

Ruralrose said...

Thanks for the recipe, I just have to try it too! Lunar eclipse this weekend will shoot everyone in new directions, just go with the flow and you might just find yourself of easy street. I would like to get in on that book draw if I could. Peace

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Those look fantastic! I am a big fan of Turkish Delights! Great giveaway and interesting book.



Peter M said...

Very impressive and none too hard it seems. The Greeks make loukoumia as well and my fave is flavoured with grape must.

Carolyn said...

Homemade turkish delight with YOUR schedule? Impressive! I'd love to read that chapter for subbing homemade formulas for toxic additives.

bellini valli said...

My dad absolitely adores Turkish delight so we have had it since childhood. I have never attempted to make my own so thank you for the inspiration.

Luvdaylilies said...

Your recipe & photo made my mouth water, lol!
I would so enjoy having the book to help me out when I'm having an ingrient dilemma, thanks for the chance!
Luvdaylilies at bellsouth dot net

Proud Italian Cook said...

Rose and almond sounds like a perfect match. I don't know how you have time to do any cooking at all! ButI know you love working with the caterer, because you're in your element! Take it easy if you can today, the humidity is crazy!!!

Saretta said...

Thanks for a great post full of interesting info! I will have to try this recipe, Turkish Delight is a favorite of mine!

Sooz said...

This gluten free eater is excited to try this recipe, with nothing that needs substitution! I would love to have a book of substitutions, as I find them necessary for most recipes I cook, and I would love to be less chemical in my kitchen!

The Caked Crusader said...

Sounds like the sort of book that every kitchen needs.
Admire your energy in working 2 demanding jobs

Jen said...

Sue Epstein seems to have read my mind...I would love a complete guide to what I can use for substitutes in the kitchen!

Jen said...

Sue Epstein has read my mind! I can't wait to check out her book.

Dagmar - A Cat in the Kitchen said...

Wow, I can totally understand why you're exhausted. Please make sure to take care of yourself!!!

RJ Flamingo said...

Girl, you know I'm cheering you on in whatever you do, but don't hurt yourself! ;-)

I'd love to have this book in my collection. Nothing worse than wanting to make a certain recipe, only to discover you're one ingredient short!

Laura said...

Love the recipe! Turkish Delight always reminds me of C.S. Lewis's "The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe." :)

Anonymous said...

i'd admire everything you're doing. take care.

paz xoxo

gatortail said...

The ability to provide alternative ingredients is one of my main criteria for judging a chef or cook's expertise and value as a teacher. Your substitution of almonds for pistachios in the Turkish Delight is a good example in that it provides more than a this-or-that as one has to choose the cut as well, since it affects the candy's presentation.
It appears that "Substituting Ingredients" would provide a great tool for these kinds of ideas. I am always on the lookout for such valuable info.