6:24 AM EST
New-school Cocktail: Turkish Delight
I was on a bit of a Turkish kick and then I realized - wait, what about cocktails!? Granted, as a largely Muslim country there isn’t a rich tradition of mixology but Turkey isn’t a dry nation. In fact, Turkey produces some wonderful wines in addition to rakı, an anise-flavored liqueur similar to Greek ouzo. My recipe for Turkish Delight mixes bourbon and rakı with orange blossom water, a nod to the eponymous confection. To sweeten the drink I use pekmez, Turkish grape molasses.
• 2 ounces bourbon
• 1 ounce Turkish rakı*
• 2 teaspoons orange blossom water
• 2 teaspoons pekmez**
Stir ingredients until pekmez dissolves. Serve over a large piece of ice in an old-fashioned glass. The Turkish Delight is meant to be a sipping drink but add a splash of water if you’d like.
*Feel free to use pastis, ouzo or sambuca if you can’t find rakı.
**Pekmez, sometimes labeled grape molasses, can be found in many Middle Eastern or Turkish markets. It is sometimes made from other fruits like figs or mulberries. If you cannot find pekmez you can use honey instead but it will not have the same unique flavor.