Goat Cheese Salad

cheesesalad2

We finished our work earlier today and a colleague of mine invited me to have an afternoon tea together at her home. I knew that she moved her new house a week ago, so I gladly accepted to learn its location. And guess what we had together! Not surprisingly we planned to make kisir together on the way home, so we stopped by a supermarket to buy the necessary ingredients. I mentioned the role of kisir among Turkish women before, making and having kisir together is a very common habit of us when we decide to come together. She bought the ingredients of kisir and I bought a chocolate cake from the market. It is a part of our culture to buy and take something to the house we are invited. If you don’t, it’s not a problem at all, but it’s thought as a sign of politeness if you go with something (such as a kind of dessert or drink) to there.

When we arrived, she suggested to show around  her new house. I don’t know if this is special to our culture or if other cultures have this same tradition. Generally when people move to a new house, they show around that new house to their guests. They want their guests to know the parts of the house and feel comfortable. In this way, they know where the kitchen is or where the rest room is, so they can easily find these places when they need. This may be thought as a sign of showing off in other cultures, but here it is thought as a friendly behaviour.And you can make your friend happy saying how beautifully her house is decorated. To be honest, I personally don’t like this tradition much. Homes are the only places where we have our privacy and this shouldn’t be bothered. Besides, I don’t think that it’s necessary for the guests to know every part of your house. What do you say? It would be great to hear if anyone from other cultures have the same tradition.

Anyway, we had great time together making and eating kisir followed by tea and chocolate cake. And when I returned home, I decided to prepare a quick dinner which we call breakfast as it included Turkish black tea, potato salad, sliced tomato and cucumber and a salad made of goat cheese.

This goat cheese is very different from regulat goat cheese. This cheese is encased in a skin of goat. It has an incredible taste most probably because it has a long and difficult process. Goat milk is heated and fermented. There becomes a clot and this clot is waited in a fabric bag for 3 days so that it is decomposed from its water. After that, the clot is crumbled and mixed with a 3% proportion of salt and then it is waited in open air for about 18 hours. This process is repeated a few times to get the right aroma. Finally, the cheese is encased in a goat skin and waited for 120 days.  This goat skin has also a long process. It is salted 1 and a half year before the cheese is encased. After such an arduous process, you can imagine how wonderful it tastes.

We either eat this specail cheese plain or make a salad of it for an appetizing breakfast. The ingredients of this salad is up to you, you can use any greens you have. Some people put tomatoes in this salad, but I don’t love it in cheese salad as it is a succulent vegetable.

Tulum Peyniri Salatası

Ingredients
-    1 cup goat cheese encased in skin (or any kind you love)
-    Fresh dill
-    Parsley
-    Fresh basil
-    Red pepper flakes
-    1 tbsp olive oil

Chop all  greens and mix them with cheese. Season it with red pepper flakes and drizzle olive oil on it. You can serve this sald with sliced tomatoes and cucumbers near it (not in it) and a few black olives also go perfect with it.

cheesesalad2

Stubborn Tomatoes

Besides the open markets, you may also see pickup trucks full of vegetables and fruits in Turkey strolling around neighborhoods. They also have a loud speaker and you hear the driver shouting “Tomato, potato, onion, melon!” These may change according to the season. When you hear this voice, you go down and buy what you need from that truck. They are like mobile markets.
The truck full of tomatoes hits the road from the field to the city center. These tomatoes will be either delivered to groceries or sold to people in various neighborhoods. However, some of the tomatoes are reluctant to go to the city center as they love their field so much. Three mischievous tomatoes get out of the truck, but caught by the police just as they are about to turn back to their field. However, the smartest of tomatoes succeeds to escape and noone notices. (drawing by mom)

Comments

  1. says

    yum! I love goat cheese- its one of my favorites.

    I think we more or less have the same tradition of showing off a new house here.

  2. says

    The salad looks incredible as does the cheese you described, I’d love to try it sometime. I do not think we have anything like that here. What is the name of it, if you know it? I’d love to learn more about it.

    We have some similar customs in the US regarding moving to a new house, and some people can feel its a bit like showing off, but most folks are curious and would like to look around. I think some people compromise, and only show the public rooms, like the living room kitchen and other places where guests would normally see and not the bedrooms.

  3. says

    Delicious post! I’m a huge fan of goat cheese and must make my own again soon!

    BTW, in many Italian neighborhoods in the NY Metro area where I grew up, pickup trucks also went through the neighborhood annoucing fresh vegetables for sale from farms elsewhere in the state.

  4. says

    Hello Zerrin

    It’s been a long time since I stop by your blog. But I had read your recipe on my email.

    About the traditions: Taking something to the host house and showing the guest the new house are some of the customs in my country. Also there are still some cities where trucks with loud speakers go around selling vegetables and fruit. Funny, right? A lot of things in common.

    I wonder how that aged cheese will taste. Wonderful I bet.

  5. says

    It sounds like a lovely day. I think, in our U.S. culture, the first thing is it depends on your region and your inherited culture, but I think the majority show the public rooms and sometimes the private ones (ie. the bedrooms or study) but sometimes that’s considered showing off. I like the Turkish idea of making it more convenient for the guests in terms of the bathroom, kitchen, etc. And yes, we usually bring something for the host/hostess, but sometimes flowers in lieu of something to eat or drink.

  6. says

    I so enjoy hearing about the ways food is exchanged in shared in Turkey as a way to express friendship. Bringing a dish while visiting is, I think, a fairly universal custom but making it as part of the visit is rather unique! But it’s one of the best ways to bond, isn’t it? I also love the other custom you mentioned in a previous post about how when you bring a bowl of pastries or goodies during a visit, your friend will then re-fill the bowl with something else for you to take home!

    As Natasha mentioned, a ‘house-warming’ party is common in the US – the owners invite guests to celebrate their new home with them and gifts are generally for the house, such as decorations or something for the kitchen. I didn’t have one for our house; I’m not a very good housekeeper so it’s just as well that I don’t show people certain rooms!

    As far as bringing food when visiting a Filipino home, it’s definitely much different that it is in Turkey and other cultures. For Filipinos, hospitality is often measured by the amount of food offered so hosts pride themselves on providing more than enough. A guest who brings food as a gift my inadvertently offend the host, implying that won’t be enough food. This is changing, thank goodness, as more Filipinos understand that the intent was only to be kind and thoughtful.

    Thank you for the wonderful info on this delicious goat cheese! Perhaps we’ll be fortunate to find it somewhere here.

  7. says

    Lauren- Even goat cheese has several kinds hre, but this one encased in goat skin is my favorite.

    Jenn- This healthy salad is mostly eaten at breakfast here, but this can also be a great appetizer.

    Oyster- We call it “tulum peyniri”, in Turkish, tulum is for the goat skin in which the cheese encased, peynir is for cheese. This goat skin makes it more tasty maybe because it preserves the cheese from light and air. This same method can also be applied for sheep cheese, which is again incredibly delicious.

    Hearing that you have a similar tradition is so nice, that means we’re not alone! And Showing public rooms is better. Otherwise, you can’t stop people’s curiosity.

    Hugging the Coast- I’m definitely surprised by learning that there are pickup trucks in another country. I love shopping from them, but despite my all efforts, I can’t understand what they are selling. We just hear a strange voice from the loudspeaker and understand what they have on the pickup only when we go down see it.

    Mely- Nice to see you here after that long time. Thanks for stopping by and commenting. It’s so nice to hear we have common traditions. I enjoy sharing and learning traditions here, this is the best part of having this blog. I don’t know how those trucks in your country, but here they are really funny as we don’t understand what their voice is just like they are muttering. We must have a look to understand what they have on the pickup.

    Cajun Chef Ryan- Thanks for visiting and commenting. This type of goat cheese is my favorite.

    Jen- Thank you so much for those information about your culture.Showing just bathroom and kitchen is a friendly behaviour, but you know there may be some curious guests depending on the region. I don’t like that much curiousity on one’s house. We sometimes bring flowers, too but desert or pastries are more common as a gift here.

    Natasha- A house warming party may be great. You show everywhere to everyone once and at the same time, and that’s all. You don’t get bothered one more time.

    Tangled Noodle- This sharing part is generally a part of close relationships. If we have a formal relationship, of course we don’t do this. But I love shopping and sharing the cost together with the house host who invite us. It’s a big sign of sincerity for me. It’s so nice to hear that you remember about that tradition of us about re-filling the bowl. I enjoy sharing traditions, and knowing that there ae people enjoying reading these makes me even happier.
    About the house warming party, I would do the same, just show the bathroom maybe.
    Thank you so much for giving that information about that cultural difference. I undesrtand once more that we should definitely learn the customs of the country we’re planning to visit before we arrive there as they may have totally different meanings of certain behaviours in their culture.

    I’m quite sure that you’d love that cheese if you had a chance for tasting it.

    Lisa- This goat cheese is just one kind of several types of goat cheese, but this one is my favorite. I’m sure you’ll love it, too.

  8. says

    I’m a big fan of goats cheese, though I don’t think I’ve ever had any like the one you describe, so I would love to try it – wonder if I’ll have to visit Turkey in order to do so!

  9. says

    My late Nene (granma) used to make a similar salad, where she would mix crumbled cheese with all sorts of fresh herbs. We would pack it inside a lavash bread and have a snack. It was my favorite childhood snack:) Tulum Peyniri is what we call Motal Pendir in Azerbaijan. It is preserved either in sheep skin or in goat skin. Some people don’t like the taste of the cheese because it has a specific smell to it, but I love it! I haven’t tried this salad with red pepper flakes and loved the idea. will definitely try it your way.

  10. says

    I love the look and sound of this salad and the cheese. My gosh it sound AMAZING!! I love that it is a breakfast dish. In the U.S. I don’t think people would think to eat a salad for breakfast, however it seems like a great way to start the day!

    We show our houses. I personally like it, but I am not a private person. I love to see what people do with their houses (as far as decorating) because it always gives me ideas for my house. Often people will have what is called a house warming party. They have a party and invites friends and the idea is having friends and family in is what maked it a home and warm. So you invite people to come “warm” your home.

  11. OysterCulture says

    Hi Zerrin,

    As you saw, I did a post on sheep cheese, and am now writing a post on goat cheese, I intend to link to this post, but was curious to see if there were any other Turkish goat cheeses that you thought I should mention.

    Hope you are having a lovely day!

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Tulum peyniri is a favorite goat cheese of my Turkish friend, Zerrin.  Tulum refers to the goat skin in which the cheese encased, and  peynir refers to for cheese.  It has an incredible taste most probably because it has a long and difficult process. Goat milk is heated and allowed to ferment.  When it becomes a solid, it is hung in a fabric bag for 3 days so that it drains much of the water.  After that, the clot is crumbled and mixed with a 3% proportion of salt and then it is waited in open air for about 18 hours. This process is repeated a few times to get the right aroma. Finally, the cheese is encased in a goat skin and aged for 120 days.  The goat skin gets its own treatment – it is salted for 18 months before it is used to encase the cheese.  ”After such an arduous process, you can imagine how wonderful it tastes.  The goat skin makes it more tasty maybe because it preserves the cheese from light and air”. [...]

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