Cilbir – Poached Eggs In Garlic Yogurt

Ever eaten ice-cream with a fork and a knife? I am just back from a 5-day trip to my dad’s hometown in Kahramanmaras, in the Mediterranean Region of Turkey and that’s how they eat gelato there. Kahramanmaras ice-cream includes dried orchid roots and goat’s milk as its main ingredients, is very hard and does not melt easily. The best way to eat it is with a knife and a fork.

I’ve attached a picture of Kahramanmaras ice-cream here:

I’ll write more about my Kahramanmaras trip later. Now back to our title topic, Turkish poached eggs recipe. It’s called cilbir in Turkish, i call it creamy protein bomb. If you’re not used to having yogurt in savory recipes, Turkish cuisine is not really your cup of tea then. I always wondered why people of the English-speaking world find yogurt “too rich” when they have dishes soaked in cream or mayonnaise. Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against cream or mayo, in fact, those two are my favorite sauce ingredients, but I also think that yogurt is  nothing but a fresh, creamy, tangy and clean base for a lot of sauce recipes.

Ingredients (serves 2):

2 liters of boiling water

3 tablespoons of vinegar

1 teaspoon of salt

4 eggs


3-4 cups of plain yogurt

2 cloves of garlic

A pinch of salt


2 tablespoons of butter

1 teaspoon of paprika

Red pepper flakes

Dried or fresh mint leaves


Crush the garlic cloves and add them into yogurt. Stir well until the yogurt holds a creamy texture. Add salt. Divide garlic yogurt sauce into two plates.

Melt butter in a saucepan, add paprika and red pepper flakes to season. Remove from heat when it sizzles.

In a deep skillet, bring water to boil. Add salt and vinegar into water. Keep the skillet on low heat. The surface of the water should not be trembling, but it should still be hot enough. If you’re worried about your poaching skills, there is a safer way of doing this. Crack one egg into a small cup and holding it up right, lower the cup into simmering water and then gently twist it and turn the egg into boiling water. Repeat the same for the remaining eggs. Allow the first one to settle a bit before adding the second egg. Cook each egg for about 3-4 minutes until the outer layer becomes opaque and the yolk is still a bit wobbly, but not too runny.

When you are ready to serve, remove the eggs from the water with a slotted spoon, drain and place them atop the yogurt in each plate. Drizzle melted butter sauce over the eggs and yogurt, re-heat the butter sauce if needed, sprinkle mint leaves and serve immediately.

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14 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Fayez, I love what you’re doing. I spent a month in Turkey, two years ago and admire the cuisine. But it’s hard to find much about it in the States.

    • Hi Nicole,
      Elif here. I am the blogger, I don’t know who Fayez is, I hope you still like the blog :). Cheers.

  2. Hi Elif, weird. Your blog posts are all over the Facebook page for Fayez, so I thought he must be the author. Don’t really know him, add love what YOU are doing.
    Are you in Turkey
    thanks you,
    Nicole

    • He must have shared the recipes through this blog’s facebook page. You can see my posts on http://www.facebook.com/ottomancuisine . Anywayz, thanks again for being so kind to drop a comment on my humble blog. I’ve read about your work a lot (online), conscious feast is great. I agree with you hundred percent on the greatness of unprocessed “real” food. Oh and yes, I am in Turkey, Istanbul. I’d appreciate any feedback from your side regarding this blog and recipes, as I am trying to improve things. Take care.

  3. Hi Elif,
    how do you say,”Turkish Delight”, like the candy, in Turkish?
    thanks,
    Nicole

    • Hi Nicole, we call it “lokum” (pronounced like lo-koom). I am planning to make lokum and put up the recipe and pictures on the blog very soon.
      Cheers
      Elif

  4. Thanks you so much!
    Nicole

  5. OMG I tried it and it’s soooo tasty! Thanks

  6. Haha, I was recently talking about cilber with my boyfriend and I had to smile when I found it. There’s no restaurant serving cilber in Istanbul and my question is why?

    • 🙂 Ah yes, it’s rare to find places that serve çılbır, funny. I’d say maybe it’s considered a quick simple dish, too simple to be served in a restaurant. At least breakfst places should consider adding this wonderfully simple dish to their menus. Afterall, less is more, right?

      • I agree. The art of poaching shouldn’t be underestimated. They serve egg benedict but why not cilber?! My Turkish boyfriend discovered cilber through me. How funny!

        • Exactly! You make it with vinegar garlic and yogurt right? Oh yummm, the best! Where are you and your bf (in Turkey) from, if you dont mind me asking?

  7. My partner and I stumbled over here from a different
    webbsite and thought I might check things out.

    I like what I see so nnow i’m following you. Loook forward
    to lookijg at your web page again.


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