When it came to feeding ourselves on a budget, Izmir was a happy and unexpected find. We were on a mission to explore as much of the city as possible, so food stops were fuel stops to keep us going until we needed to replenish dwindling energy levels again. Of course, the beauty of Turkey is there’s always some cheap, tasty street food on hand that doesn’t play second fiddle – it’s often the star of the show – to that which you’d get in a restaurant. Eating on a budget in Izmir was no sacrifice.
Welcome to offering number 4 in our 2013 Turkish Food Focus series. Aside from last week’s post about tepsi kebabı, this is also the third post about the foods we came across in Izmir. We had a comforting 1 TL lunch of nohutlu pilav after climbing the hill to the Velvet Castle, Kadifekale and we also realised that the good folks of Izmir have the gevrekçi as opposed to the simitçi and wondered why. We learned a lot from that post!
So, as the gevrekçi was such a feature of a few days in Izmir, we’re once again returning to the street food wares he sells. Both simit and gevrek are available for passers by as well as açma. But there is also a running theme that didn’t escape our attention. The people of Izmir are also treated to this simple sandwich…
The bread is the same type of bread that was used for our Çeşme Kumrusu; a dense, filling bread, topped in sesame seeds. This is sliced part way through the middle and filled with slices of tomato and a slice of Izmir tulum cheese (Izmir is famous for its quality tulum). It’s then topped with one of these feisty-looking green chillies which was a (pleasant) surprise as Aegean cuisine isn’t usually associated with spicy ingredients.
You’re exploring Izmir. You need food on the go. If you bought this, would you opt for the chilli or remove it? We know what we would do!