Curds and wahey!

January 4, 2010

Yesterday, our lovely friends Meryem and Özgür took Süleyman and me for breakfast. We drove out to Beşiktaş, an area of Istanbul out along the Bosphorous coast, to go and eat something that has become a bit of an obsession for me. Called kaymak in Turkish, it has been variously described to me as a kind of Turkish clotted cream, the skin off the top of yoghurt and condensed milk. What it actually is, though, is simply curd. Eaten at breakfast, generously smeared on crusty white bread and drizzled with honey, it is fresh-tasting and delicious.

When I told Meryem of my passion for kaymak, she said we must go to a place run by an 85-year-old third generation Greek immigrant called Pando. Opened by his great-grandfather in 1895, the family has been serving breakfast in the tiny shop ever since.

The menu is basic – kaymak and honey with fresh bread sprinkled with carraway seeds, followed by an omelette with a few sliced tomatoes and olives. The traditional drink with this is a glass of hot milk, which comes from a great steaming bowl that’s kept on the go all day. This, however, I really couldn’t stomach, so I stuck with the Turkish tea.

Sadly, it looks like old Pando may the last of his family to keep this special place going. So, I’m really glad that I had the chance to eat there before it disappears.


3 Responses to “Curds and wahey!”

  1. Meryem Says:

    Lindsey, it was really lovely day:) Kaymak and honey,irresistible match for me:) Kaymakçı Pando and his wife are very nice people. I like the atmosphere of this old-and tiny shop.
    If someone wants to have a different breakfast in Istanbul,they should go to Kaymakcı Pando.

  2. Ravenous Ro Says:

    Looks fantastic

  3. Kerry Says:

    On every school holiday stay at my Nan’s in Newquay my brother was given clotted cream and honey on toast – this was called Thunder and Lightening! I, myself, boringly just ate plain toast or all bran. My arteries probably thank me for it though.
    See you soon

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