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Originally I'm from the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia, Canada. My little village of Naramata is famous for peaches, wine and sunshine. I also lived in Victoria during my University years where I fostered a love of coffee, soup and fresh bread.
After University, I moved to Taipei, Taiwan for what was supposed to be one year but turned into seven. This is where I picked up a love of Asian food and travel. So to combine the two, I took a few basic courses in Thailand and Northern India in the local cuisine and have incorporated some of those tastes into my everyday cooking.
Since then I've made the move to Istanbul. This is where I really started to cook on a regular basis. The markets are full of gorgeous fresh produce, and I spend a lot of time cruising the markets to see what's in season.
Ironically, I cook here more than any other country I've been to, but this is the most basic kitchen I've ever had! No microwave, processor, or dishwasher for me! In a way it's nice though, I feel I've gotten back to the roots of cooking - fresh, quality ingredients and heat.
Of course there are a few things here in Turkey that are difficult to find or crazily expensive, so I have taken to growing my own basil, chives and coriander. On the other hand, I am enjoying the pomegranates, figs, eggplant, pistachios and beautiful tomatoes that grow in abundance here in Turkey. (And yogurt gets an honorable mention too!)
Although it's sometimes hard to recreate Asian dishes here, (the Turkish are notoriously unadventurous eaters!), it's getting easier to find ingredients in the markets. In the meantime, I have added a whole swath of Turkish recipes to my cookbook!
My favorite foods would have to be anything Asian, Indian or Middle Eastern. I love cooked veggies.
I also have a weakness for anything almond, ginger or lemon flavoured.