A while ago I received an email from my dear friend Bevan, in Istanbul. It made me very hungry. He gave me his permission to post it. So that others could be made hungry, too.
The pictures are of his "hokkie" (Afrikaans for cage - the kind of thing we kept our rabbits in when we were little), a shepherd's cottage in the south of Turkey, near Fethiye, that he restored for himself - since he usually restores for others - and to which he retreats when retreat is necessary. I saw it one year when it was all falling down and quite uninhabitable. It is different now. It is still in the middle of an olive grove.
"Lovely expensive time in London with R and H who love eating even more than you and I.
Notable foods: fried sweetbreads mixed with baby green beans and mint; mallard with red cabbage and lentils (it is winter); Spanish broken eggs which contained potatoes, chorizo and prawns; rhubarb trifle; eel with beetroot; quince sorbet with rhubarb; and a beautiful dish of risotto with squid ink and bits of sea animals embedded.
Last night made a dish of red baked quinces to be eaten with buffalo cream. Tomorrow going to my hokkie in the country for a week, to eat other things."
Picture: Bevan Christie
And of the rose with archaeological finds: "The rose is one of those impossibly heavily scented ones that the locals make jam of."
And this just a couple of weeks ago. Impossibly heavily scented Turkish roses.