Turkish soup, also known as ‘corba’, is the first course in all Turkish meals. The main ingredients of Turkish soups are usually responsible for the name of the dish. The most commonly made soups are tarhana corbasi, bademli tavuk and domates.
There are two categories of soups in Turkish cuisine: Daily-diet soups and delicacy soups. Daily-diet soups, as name suggest, are the soups that serve the daily nutritional requirement of the Turkish people with other foods, whereas delicacy soups are generally not a part of daily Turkish meals, but prepared at special occasions and festive meals.
History of Turkish Soups
Turkish soup is the representative of heritage cuisine of Ottoman Empire that had largely influenced the entire Turkish cuisine. The culinary customs of the realm of Ottomans were fused into the Turkish cuisine that resulted in the introduction of herbs, lentils, fish and yoghurt to Turkish soups. Initially, before the popularization of the breakfast culture among Turks, the soups were the first dish in morning for them. Slowly, as the customs changed, the Turkish soups began to be consumed as a part of main meals.
Popular Turkish Soup Recipes
- Bademli tavuk – Popular as chicken soup with almonds, this soups has many variations in different cuisines. It is a thick soup that is generally prepared by boiling and simmering the chicken bones or meat along with various vegetables and seasonings. Almond paste is generally used to accentuate the flavor and the thickness of the broth. The combination of chicken and almonds is well-liked in Turkish as well as middle-eastern cuisines.
- Domates – It is the regular tomato soup prepared in Turkish cuisine. It can either be served hot or cold depending upon the choice. Though classic tomato soup is smooth in texture, the variations with tomato chunks or chicken stock are equally popular. It is also popular as a ‘comfort food’ in Turkish as well as other world cuisines. Sour cream and croutons are the popular toppings for tomato soups.
- Tarhana – This Turkish soup comprising of fermented vegetables, cracked wheat and yoghurt is a delicacy in Turkey. It is often prepared with fermented milk and water. Vegetable stock or meat broth is also a good addition to the soup.
- Lahana soup – It is a popular cabbage soup in Turkish cuisine. A delight for vegetarians, this soup is loaded with nutrients and considered light on palate. It is a good appetizer before a hearty Turkish meal.
Health Facts Related to Turkish Soups
Turkish soups are both flavorful and healthful, as several vegetables like cabbage, carrots, onion and garlic are extensively used in them along with healthy meats like chicken, lamb and fish. Even wide use of lentils and yoghurt also makes the soup nourishing. Cracked bulgur or wheat are the key components of thick Turkish soups that are equally beneficial than other soups.