Olà / Merhaba / Rojbas
The word in the title must be so unfamiliar but no worries, I will write about it today. In the last article, I mentioned about a sweet/dessert, and this is the name of it. It is a soft and sweet snack which is my city´s traditional (in my city) one that foreign people from other countries and even from other Turkish cities consider it as Turkish delight (lokum); however, it is not.
The dessert belongs to Mersin where is in southern part of Turkey. Mersin has officially registered and protected geographic indicator for this desert. It means that no other city or person can claim this dessert as their own (click to see the official patent page and the registration document). Etymology of this dessert`s name rooted the Arabic word jazara which means carrot. Turkish people who has Arabic roots or ancestors from Syria, which is about 350 km away from Mersin, forms one of the big pieces of this cosmopolitan city`s population cake. This tells us that this dessert most probably is a product of a person with Arabic ancestors. Otherwise, it is just a coincidence since Turkish language has many Arabic words even if the word jazara does not mean anything in Turkish. Another interesting fact is carrot is called in Turkish as “havuç” which comes from the word havic in Persian language.
So, what is this dessert?
Turkish delight is made mainly from sugar (it is actually full of sugar) and some of fruits or other aromas can be added to relish it. Yet, comparing to the classic Turkish delight that many of you know and heard about, or tasted, Cezerye is made from mainly carrot instead of sugar. Sugar is added only for adding sweetness. Furthermore, Turkish delight is predominantly in the cubic shape:
However, cezerye is generally called as yaprak cezerye, which yaprak means leaf in Turkish, and in the shape of thin matchbox.
How do they make Cezerye?
Carrots are needed to be boiled and mashed, and then they are caramelised with sugar. The other key element of this desert is cinnamon. Many producers say they have a secret recipe that some other spices are added but I always enjoy with the taste of cinnamon.
Furthermore, roasted pistachio, walnuts, hazelnuts, peanuts commonly be added in this beautiful snack. Pistachio is always good in desserts but since its taste is softer than other nuts, I do not feel the taste of it in cezerye. So, that is why I usually prefer with hazelnuts because its natural oil makes the taste of cezerye wonderful for me.
Hope you are not licking your lips..
P.S.: Justyna ate the whole box of cezerye. 🙂
(Published 2022/10/26 at 4:07 pm)