Legendary Dishes | Balik Ekmek (fish sandwich)

Fried Mackerel with Red Berry Jelly

Istanbul is full of aromas that tease and tempt but none capture the tastes of this ancient city like the smell of grilled mackerel. Still known as a street food because of ancient associations with the fishers of the Bosphorus, balık ekmek is now synonymous with the tourist centres of Eminönü and the galata Bridge. Crunchy loaves and oily fishes are a throwback, one of the oldest traditional foods in the world. Here in Turkey they part of the fabric of life. The cooking time depend on the size of your mackerel.

  • 4 mackerel, filleted
  • 1 baquette, cut into four, halved
  • Lettuce, shredded
  • Onion, sliced into rings
  • Paprika flakes
  • Tomato, quartered
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • Oil, for frying

Heat a frying pan, add a thin drizzle of oil, place fillets flesh side down, cook for two minutes. gently flip over, cook for three or four minutes on the skin side. Place fillets inside the cut breads, dress with a choice of lettuce, onion and tomato, season with paprika flakes and finish with a splash of lemon juice.