OUR KITCHEN CULTURE IN FILTER OF HISTORY
Firstly, what is kitchen and where it happened from? We start by explaining these. “Kitchen” happened from “Matbah” in Arabic and it means place that foods are cooked. Besides, the kitchen is defined as a culture which shows equipments for preparing foods and beverages, the weak spot of cooking and meal ceremonies. Human and kitchen became one within the other along history, because food and beverage is necessary the most main need. Because of this reason, the kitchen concept occured as natural.
At the same time, kitchen is a tool which is reflected food and beverage cultures of the countries, becuse each country has a food and beverage culture according to itself. Turkish kitchen is also o ne of these cultures. All right, How did Turkish kitchen culture happen? Where does its history go?
Turkish kitchen is a kitchen based on Middle Asia Culture. According to Culture and Tourism Ministery of Turkey, various products which Middle Asia and Anatolia presented, interaction which lived together with different cultures, new tastes which developed in Ottoman and Selcuk kitchen play roles for development of Turkish kitchen(1). Furthermore, Turkish kitchen also became interaction together with Balcans and Mesopotamia(2).
Turkish kitchen improved more at the time Ottoman Empire. There is “palace kitchen” named as “matbah-ı amire”. This palace kitchen had 20 big chimneys and meals was being prepared for 4.000-5.000 people(3). Furthermore, important banquets was being given in the palace and the preparations for this banquets was being making disciplined.
In 16. Century, numbers of executive chef of the palace are 60 and numbers of maidservants are 200. In the middle of 17. Century, these numbers increased until 1370(4). The importance which Ottoman gave to kitchen occured today’s turkish kitchen.
As we all know, there is a concept known as “floor dining table” in Turkish kitchen culture. People eat the meals on these tables. However, over the years, dining tables which is high from floor entered to homes and this culture has started to disappear slowly. Actually, it hasn’t disappeared yet. Now, floor dining table culture continues in Anatolia and some regions.
There is something that doesn’t change in Turkish kitchen culture. That is also “dining table customs”. This dining table customs is; plates and equipments will be clean, foods will be clean, delicious, small people will not start to eat rather than big people eat, meal will be eaten with right hand.
Today, Turkish kitchen is the richest third kitchen of the world together French and Chine(5). A popular kitchen is very important for advertisement of that country.
In last years, we see that foreign cultures influence Turkish kitchen. The most known sample is fast-food meals entered to turkish culture.
I finish my article with a sentence that Ali Ozcil who is author of Cyprus Newspaper and Turizmden.com: “Our kitchen is a kitchen that is presented with a lot of garnitures and taste of hot and cold meals don’t change”
I hope to claim Turkish kitchen and culture…
(1) http://www.kultur.gov.tr/TR/belge/1-3272/turk-mutfak-kulturu.html (16.12.2010)
(2) http://tr.wikipedia.org/wiki/T%C3%BCrkiye#Mutfak (16.12.2010)
(3, 4) http://www.mersinturizm.gov.tr/belge/1-5100/eski2yeni.html (16.12.2010)