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Istanbul Eats Cooks: Maya’s Mücver

In a short time, Karaköy’s Lokanta Maya [2] has become one of the most sought-after tables in town. More than any other restaurant we’ve tried in Istanbul, Maya does contemporary Turkish effortlessly, without skimping on that traditional Turkish flavor. A mainstay on the menu, and reason enough to come here for a meal, is chef Didem Şenol’s mücver, or zucchini fritters.

1 kg zucchini
4 eggs
200 gr flour
150 gr beyaz peynir (feta cheese)
1/2 bunch dill
1/2 bunch parsley
1/2 bunch spring onions
1/4 bunch fresh mint
a pinch of baking powder
freshly ground black pepper

hazelnut oil to fry (sunflower oil can be substituted)

Grate the zucchini, add some salt and leave aside for half an hour to let the juices come out, then squeeze out the liquid. Chop the herbs and onions finely. Then add the eggs, flour, baking powder and cheese to the grated zucchini and mix. Add the herbs and scoop them into little golf-ball sized balls.

Fry them in the oil till they are golden brown. (Note: Maya deep-fries their mücver, but they can also be prepared in a pan filled halfway up with oil and flipped over after one side turns golden brown.) Serve with a dipping sauce made out of strained yogurt mixed with chopped cucumber and fresh mint.

(photo: courtesy of Lokanta Maya)

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