Turkish Eggy Toast (Yumurtalı Ekmek)
Mornings of my first couple of years in the States were marked by fruitless search for non-meaty, moderately eggy, feta cheesy, and above all definitely savory breakfasts. In time I let it go and settled down with sunny side ups, hash browns, and occasionally crispy bacon strips. One Sunday morning, back in Bloomington, IN, when we were at our favorite local breakfast place Wee Willie’s (the dirty or the old one on South Walnut St) which had real Bloomingtonian customers, heaviest gravies in town, old wooden booths soaked with grease, awesome fresh squeezed orange juice, and chatty middle age waitresses with great sense of humor, I had a sudden craving for Turkish toast. I was going on and on about how delicious it was. Jen, Nolan, and Aaron, probably hoping to change my regular subject of homesickness times, “Turkish food is awesome,” asked me what Turkish toast was. I explained with great enthusiasm how it was made and they said “it’s like French toast, the idea is the same!” The French toast specialist Jen reassured me that those two sounded quite similar. They encouraged me to order French toast with no powder sugar and cinnamon. In another attempt to have an almost Turkish savory breakfast, I did not only what Jen and Nolan suggested, but also asked the waitress to add a slice of cheese on top; shouldn’t have gone so far. The expression on our waitress’ face was way more pleasing than the “Turkishized” French toast I had that morning.
“Aklın yolu birdir” or “great minds think alike”: Whether Turkish or French, the idea is really the same; to save stale i.e. “lost” bread (pain perdue). In Turkey , this toast is served for breakfast or as a snack for afternoon tea always with white cheese (feta) on the side.
half of a regular round loaf bread, sliced (approximately 10 slices)
1/4 cup milk (whole, 2%, or skim)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/4 cup frying oil (canola, vegetable, etc.)
1/2 tsp crushed oregano leaves
2 tbsp finely chopped parsley
1/2 tsp herbes de provence
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
-Beat eggs well in a bowl.
-Add milk and spices, salt and pepper. Mix well.
-Soak each slice in the mix for 5-7 seconds. Make sure each side is well coated.
-Heat oil in a frying pan.
-Fry soaked slices until golden brown on each side.
-Place fried slices on a paper towel to soak excessive oil.
-Serve warm or hot.
To make your eggy toast even more flavorful, use rosemary, olive, etc. kind of bread.