An inspiring culinary journey from back streets of Istanbul to the palace kitchen SOLD OUT

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Old Istanbul or Constantinople was built on seven hills. Each hill has a historic importance rooted back to the Roman and Ottoman empires – where the city’s diverse cuisine and culture come from.
“The Seven Hills of Istanbul” supper club represents what Istanbul cuisine is today and what it was in the past. Therefore the menu created by Irem will include inspirations and influences of the peoples’ of Istanbul – encompassing dishes from different families, neighbours, and memories from across centuries. This is distinct from the other regions of Turkey.
Irem will bring the traditional and modern cooking together at the dinner table. It is a journey from local dishes of streets of Istanbul to the palace kitchen coated up human stories. The use of seasonal food is central to real Istanbul cuisine, which is reflective of the 7 hills of the city. So expect pure Istanbul on your plates!
Turkish cuisine often conjures up very limited images such as kebab, baklava and Turkish delight. On the contrary, the 7 hills of Istanbul supper club features olive oil based green dishes, seafood, several delicate meze plates and a pudding.

Irem Asku is a former news reporter switched from the newsroom to the kitchen. Irem has trained at Ottolenghi, along with her successful food projects and cooking collaborations before joining the team at E5 Bakehouse. Irem also now runs her own initiative, Topik, which celebrates the food of minority cultures in Turkey.
https://topik.london/

SOOP uses it’s supper clubs to showcase refugee, former refugee, and migrant chefs every month. Irem will share with you some of the rich stories behind the untold culinary heritage of Istanbul. SOOP will also share with you it’s work with refugee chefs and the pilot culinary programme starting in May 2017. At SOOP we believe that the use of storytelling through food can connect us all, and supper clubs play a big role in communicating this.

All proceeds from the SOOP fundraiser supper clubs will go towards funding it’s upcoming pilot culinary training programme for refugee chefs in London. 

This month’s supper club is held at the fabulous E5 Bakehouse, London Fields. This is both BOYB and Turkish wines available to purchase on the night. Irem will be showcasing a selection of unique Turkish wines from local producers using regional grapes !

We are really looking forward to welcoming you all!

Stories On Our Plate (SOOP) & Irem Aksu


 

7 HILLS OF ISTANBUL MENU

25th/26th May

at E5 Bakehouse

Fava, Dill & Radishes …. fresh and dried broad bean pâté, lightly pickled radishes

Dövme Hiyar on Rye … cucumber, almond & lor cheese spread

Midye Salma … Cornish mussels with cinnamon and black currant rice

Lettuce with Istanbul Tarator … lettuce leaves, garlic and walnut sauce

Citrusy Kefal Pilaki … grey mullet cooked in olive oil with leeks, potatoes, lemon zest, herbs  

Irmik Helvasi, Irem’s Mastic Ice Cream & British Strawberries … semolina halva with milk sherbet, Mastic gum flavoured ice cream 

Many thanks to Fin & Flounder for donating fresh and sustainable seafood to our collaboration  for a good cause.

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The 7 Hills of Istanbul

B22B9932“The Seven Hills of Istanbul” supper club represents what Istanbul cuisine is today and what it was in the past. Therefore the menu created by me – Topik’s founder will include inspirations and influences of the peoples’ of Istanbul – encompassing dishes from different families, neighbours, and memories from across centuries. This is distinct from the other regions of Turkey.

I will bring the traditional and modern cooking together at the dinner table. It is a journey from local dishes of streets of Istanbul to the palace kitchen coated up human stories. The use of seasonal food is central to real Istanbul cuisine, which is reflective of the 7 hills of the city. So expect pure Istanbul on your plates!
Turkish cuisine often conjures up very limited images such as kebab, baklava and Turkish delight. On the contrary, the 7 hills of Istanbul supper club features olive oil based green dishes, seafood, several delicate meze plates and a pudding.

B22B9971

The 7 Hills Of Istanbul is a collaboration with Stories On Our Plate (SOOP) – All proceeds from the SOOP fundraiser supper clubs will go towards funding it’s upcoming pilot culinary training programme for refugee chefs in London.

“SOOP uses it’s supper clubs to showcase refugee, former refugee, and migrant chefs every month. Irem will share with you some of the rich stories behind the untold culinary heritage of Istanbul. SOOP will also share with you it’s work with refugee chefs and the pilot culinary programme starting in May 2017. At SOOP we believe that the use of storytelling through food can connect us all, and supper clubs play a big role in communicating this…”

For more details and buy tickets please visit grubclub website link below.

https://grubclub.com/stories-on-our-plate-soop/stories-on-our-plate-soop-the-7-hills-of-istanbul/12571

  • photos by Andreas Pettersson

Topik holds Syrian Supper Club February fest

The Syrian Supper Club with Irem Aksu stepping in as head chef on this occasion are holding another of their sell-out Syrian Suppers. This isn’t just any supper club popping up on your radar, it is an evening of merriment, delicious food inspired by all the flavours of the Middle East and to add the final chickpea to the hummus, it is all for charity. We’re raising money for The Hands Up Foundation, supporting aid projects in Syria. More details here

Armenian Supper Club at e5 Bakehouse

A Pomegranate Odyssey; From Istanbul to Yerevan

A Pomegranate Odyssey from Istanbul to Yerevan; that is what I called this supper event at e5 Bakehouse. The food I will be cooking is not only for tasting, but also for sharing some of the memories and stories of peoples of Asia Minor – the land which is a crossroads for numerous cultures. Of course Armenian culture has many things to celebrate. So I chose the medium of food to make a contribution to our shared memories.

See you there…

Irem / Chef at e5 Bakehouse & founder of Topik London 

*photos by Sebnem Ugural 

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fava and stuffed mussels / photo by Cihan Yildiz

MENU
Chemen butter, Armenian spiced marinated olives, wood fired baked flat bread
˜
Topik
caramelised onions, currants, pine nuts in chickpea dough
Midye Salma
mussels with nutty, spiced rice 
Lahana Dolma  
cabbage rolls with minced beef and smoked warm yogurt
Borlotti Pilaki   
slow cooked beans in aromatic broth with fresh herbs
Yalanchi Sarma
lentil stuffed sour vine leaves
˜
            Golden walnut kadaif with pears and pomegranates 
 more details here

Topik curated a dining event for a good cause

On the 24th October, Topik catered for a fundraising event for Dying to Divorce which is a brand new documentary about the women fighting domestic violence in Turkey.

As a part of the crowdfunding campaign, Topik – Food Without Borders organised a meal in collaboration with the filmmakers at L’atelier Dalston. As a Topik’s Chef, I curated a unique three course menu especially for the event, inspired by diverse cultures of the Ottoman Empire including Istanbul Greek, Armenian, Circassian, Black Sea region cuisines.

The night was in honour of all the women who died trying to leave their partners.

Many thanks to everyone who came out to dinner event in support of Dying to Divorce.

* photos by Cihan Yildiz