Saturday, August 12, 2017

Turkish Delight AKA Lokum

Turkish Delight, or lokum (also loukoum), is a confection made from starch and sugar. It is often flavored with rosewater or lemon, the former giving it a characteristic pale pink color. It has a soft, sticky consistency, and is often packaged and eaten in small cubes that are dusted with sugar to prevent sticking. Some recipes include small nut pieces, usually pistachio, hazelnut or walnuts.

Turkish delight, lokum or rahat lokum and many other transliterations (Ottoman Turkish: رَاحَة الْحُلْقُوم‎ rāḥat al-ḥulqūm, Turkish: Lokum or rahat lokum, from colloquial Arabic: راحه الحلقوم‎‎ rāḥat al-ḥalqūm, Azerbaijani: /lɑːtiɡum/ ) is a family of confections based on a gel of starch and sugar. Premium varieties consist largely of chopped dates, pistachios, and hazelnuts or walnuts bound by the gel; traditional varieties are mostly flavored with rosewater, mastic, Bergamot orange, or lemon. The confection is often packaged and eaten in small cubes dusted with icing sugar, copra, or powdered cream of tartar, to prevent clinging. Other common flavors include cinnamon and mint. In the production process, soapwort may be used as an emulsifying additive.

The Turkish names lokma and lokum are derived from the Arabic word luqma(t) and its plural luqūm meaning "morsel" and "mouthful" and the alternative Ottoman Turkish name, rahat-ul hulküm, was an Arabic formulation, rāḥat al-hulqūm, meaning "comfort of the throat", which remains the name in formal Arabic. In Libya, Saudi Arabia, and Tunisia it is known as ḥalqūm, while in Kuwait it is called كبده الفرس "chabdat alfaras" and in Egypt it is called malban (ملبن [ˈmælbæn]) or ʕagameyya and in Syria rāḥa. Its name in various Eastern European languages comes from Ottoman Turkish lokum or rahat-ul hulküm. Its name in Greek, λουκούμι (loukoumi) shares a similar etymology with the modern Turkish and it is marketed as Greek Delight. In Cyprus, where the dessert has protected geographical indication (PGI), it is also marketed as Cyprus Delight. In Armenian it is called lokhum (լոխում). Its name in Bosnian is rahat lokum, and derives from a very old confusion of the two Ottoman Turkish names found already in Ottoman Turkish; indeed this mixed name can also be found in Turkey today. Its name in Serbo-Croatian is ratluk, a reduced form of the same name. In Persian, it is called rāhat-ol-holqum (Persian: راحت الحلقوم‎‎).

In English, it was formerly alternatively known as Lumps of Delight.

The Nory Candy company in the Greater Los Angeles area has been producing Turkish Delights or Rahat Locum since 1964. The company produces different fruit and exotic flavors including rose and licorice as well a variety which include nuts such as Almonds, Pistachios, and Walnuts.

In 1930 two Armenian immigrants, Armen Tertsagian and Mark Balaban, founded Liberty Orchards of Cashmere, Washington, and began manufacturing "Aplets" (apple and walnut locoum) and "Cotlets" (apricot and walnut locoum). In 1984 they added the medley-flavored "Fruit Delights" line in strawberry, raspberry, orange, blueberry, peach, cranberry, and pineapple assortments. Although all of these confections are marketed under American-style brand names, they are referred to on product packaging as "Rahat Locoum".

In Canada, the Big Turk chocolate bar made by Nestlé consists of dark magenta Turkish Delight coated in milk chocolate, and is marketed as both Turkish delight and loukoum.

Turkish Delight AKA Lokum
Recipe For Turkish Delight AKA Lokum

2 cups sugar
0.5 cups cornstarch
1.5 cups water
0.5 tsp cream of tartar
2 tbls rosewater or
one of the following to taste:

0.5 tsp rose food flavoring
0.25 cup fruit juice
1 tbl vanilla extract
1 tbl orange extract
1 tbl Crème de menthe liqueur

Food coloring
0.5 cup chopped toasted pistachios or almonds
icing sugar, granulated sugar, or desiccated coconut for dusting

Combine sugar, 1 cup water, cream of tartar, and flavoring(s) in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Boil over medium-low heat for 20-30 minutes, until the mixture reaches "firm-ball," or 250°F (120°C) on a candy thermometer. In a separate bowl, combine cornstarch with 1/2 cup hot water, mix completely, and slowly stir into sugar mixture.

Stir constantly until mixture is evenly combined. Continue to stir on low heat under mixture thickens and becomes clearer. Apply non-stick cooking spray to a form (ice cube trays will do nicely, though not plastic ones), shallow pie pan, or jelly-roll pan. Pour the thickened hot mixture into the pan or form and allow to set. When cool, release from form or cut into cubes as applicable and roll each piece in powdered sugar, granulated sugar, or coconut. Store at room temperature in airtight container.

Text Credits: Wikipedia || WikiBooks Cookbook
Image Credit: GNU WikimediaCommons

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