Istanbul's markets adapt traditional crafts for contemporary tastes
I've been traveling through Istanbul for years and I am endlessly impressed with how the Turkish artisans continually adapt traditional Turkish products and crafts to the contemporary tastes of the market. In recent years I've watched lokum, also known as Turkish Delight, transform from simple sugar-coated rose or pistachio flavored jellies to complex creations made with honey instead of simple syrup, loaded with big chunks of nuts and rolled in colorful chopped pistachios or rose petals. A metamorphosis from confection to healthful snack.
Smokey, moist, colorful pepper flakes, known as biber, underpin Turkish cuisine
The Turks have elevated the processing of chili peppers to an art form. The peppers are massaged in olive oil and roasted over a fire before being dried and ground. The result is smokey, moist, colorful pepper flakes. The Aleppo pepper retains its vivid orangey-red, while the Urfa, or Isot, pepper is a rich purple.