Daily Archives: February 18, 2013

Fresh peas (and recipe), flamingos and other early signs of spring

Flamingosfeb2013Today, after what seems like more than a week of rainy days and grey skies, the sun came out. We went for a walk along the beach and through the wetlands at Pamucak.  Amongst a mass of gulls, a pair of migrating flamingos, an adult and a juvenile.  They were later joined by another juvenile which appeared to be injured, hard to be sure, wild flamingos do not tolerate people getting close to them.  Both of us, however, thought that it had an injured leg.

There was also a marsh harrier, larks, masses of plovers, gulls in weaving flocks, almost like a shoal of fish, shining in the sun, migrating geese, wild flowers, and tortoises freshly out of hibernation.  It really was a lovely afternoon out.

On the market spring fruit and vegetables are starting to appear. The first fresh peas and broad beans.  Tomatoes from Antalya, no doubt grown under glass.  Sorrel, gathered wild.  This all makes a nice change from the winter vegetables.    The Turks are very fond of the first fresh fruits and vegetable of the seasons, so are we.

The recipe Hilary used for these peas comes out of our Turkish Cookery book – ‘Lezzet peasSofrası’.  Hilary does tend to adapt everything…  First she sautéed an onion, cut in half moon rings (what they call piyazlık) in plenty of very good olive oil, then she threw in a cubed carrot, a potato cut into smallish dice, then she put in the peas, sauteed a little bit more,  seasoned the lot with salt, pepper and a cube of sugar then poured on hot water about half way up, covered the pan and cooked on low-medium heat till everything was done.  Towards the end she threw in some dried mint and finely chopped fresh dill.