The produce store in my hometown carries a lot more than just fresh fruits and veggies. The owner, a Turkish expatriate, carries a wide variety of imported groceries from his home country. I've written about some of the cheeses and dairy products before, but today I'm writing about balli cerez, or "Honey Nut," an amazing and delicious spread widely enjoyed in Turkey as a snack.
Balli cerez first came to my attention just before Christmas when Enfield Produce stocked a shelf with large and small jars of it. The outside layer of nuts in the jar, so carefully arranged into neat rows, caught our eye immediately, and we decided to add a jar to everyone's basket.
Our own jar, however, sat quitely in the pantry while we went about our holiday business, until last night when I discovered it anew. Time for a snack!
I opened a jar and dug in a teaspoon, taking out a small amount for a taste. [Cue choir of angels.] Damn, this stuff is amazing. It's like eating baklava without the puff pastry, only better because there's a mix of nuts both common and rather exotic within. The flavors and textures combine almost magically. I took out a full spoonful and spread it on some bread and was suddenly confronted with the best toast spread EVAR. Once the jar was opened and left visible on the kitchen table, the rest of the family decided to have tastes as well, and before long the little 200g bottle was nearly empty. Looks like I need to go back to Enfield Produce and buy one of the BIG jars.
|How can you not want a |
jar of this based just on
Ingredients include honey, beemilk (that's royal jelly), pistachios, almonds, hazlenuts, caraway, pine nuts, walnuts, peanuts, coconut, radishseed, black cumin, apricot seed, and pollen. I guess many of these ingredients have health benefits - the label also reads:
For everyone who wants to be young with a strong mind and nerves, for every old man who dreams to have his youth back.
Amazing stuff indeed.