Taking Top Honors Even When Stale...

Article: Vedat Başaran Photo: Serkan Eldeleklioğlu Date: July 2013

BREAD İS PURCHASED İN LARGE QUANTİTİES İN THE BELİEF THAT NO MEAL İS COMPLETE WİTHOUT İT. BUT THE İNEVİTABLE EXCESS GETS STALE AND GOES TO WASTE. AND YET, THERE ARE SOME RECİPES THAT EXPLİCİTLY CALL FOR STALE BREAD.

Taking Top Honors Even When Stale...
Taking Top Honors Even When Stale...

Regarded as a blessing in Turkish culture, bread is accorded great respect.  Unfortunately, however, this respect does not keep bread from being increasingly wasted. Some 12 percent of the bread produced in Turkey today sadly becomes garbage. The amount of store-bought bread that is wasted in large quantities at cafes, restaurants, snack bars, school canteens and commercial catering services is equivalent to 450,000 tons of wheat.

At a time when the world is threatened with malnutrition and hunger, is it not high time we made use of the bread produced from hundreds of thousands of tons of wheat rather than letting it go to waste? Now, when Turkey’s Soil Products Office has launched a ‘Don’t Waste Your Bread’ campaign, you too can take a step towards preventing wastage. It’s very simple: Instead of tossing your stale bread in the garbage, turn it into a tasty dish!

PAPARA
Ingredients

4 slices stale bread
1 medium onion
2 tbsp tomato paste
1 tbsp butter
1 tsp ground red and black pepper
3 tbsp yoghurt
1 clove of garlic
4 cups water

Preparation
Melt the butter in a skillet, then add the sliced (“piyaz” cut, along the grain) onions and saute until they begin to color. Add the tomato paste and spices together with the water and let simmer. Pour the sauce over the cubed stale bread on a tray, making sure all the bread cubes are moistened. May be served with garlic, or non-garlic, yoghurt as desired.

SAVORY BUNS
Ingredients

1/2 loaf stale bread1 cup milk
250 g white (Feta) cheese
2 eggs
1/2 bunch fresh dill
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup black cumin (“çörek otu”)

Preparation
Knead together the stale bread, milk, eggs and dill to make a dough and let stand in the refrigerator overnight. The next morning, add the bicarbonate of soda, then knead the dough once again and shape into uniform lumps. Beat the remaining eggs well and dip the lumps first in flour, then in the beaten eggs. Arrange on a baking sheet and sprinkle with black cumin. Bake in a preheated 200 ºC oven until golden brown all over.

BREAD SWEET WITH SOUR CHERRIES
Ingredients

2 slices stale bread
1 1/2 cup water
300 g sugar
250 g sour cherries (“vişne”)

Preparation
Toast the stale bread well in a 150 ºC oven. Boil the water and sugar together, then add the cherries. When it reaches the consistency of syrup, pour it hot over the bread and let simmer over low heat until thickened. Cool and serve topped with whipped cream or Turkish clotted cream (“kaymak”).

 

OMELETTE
Ingredients

3 slices stale bread
2 eggs
1 tbsp butter
5 sprigs of parsley
1/2 cup grated Kasseri (“Kaşar”) cheese

 

Preparation
Cut the bread in cubes, then mix all the ingredients in a bowl. Melt the butter in a non-stick skillet, brown the mixture well on both sides and serve piping hot.