Ark of taste
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Called Haviar, the dried egg sacks of the grey mullet fish are one of the most ancient Turkish foods. Haviar is extracted from the female mullet with extreme care so as not to damage the thin membrane that holds the egg sacks together, then immediately salted, dried and coated in beeswax. The village of Dalyan, on the southwestern coast of Turkey, is home to a cooperative of sixty fishermen, which swells to 600 inhabitants in the high season. These fishermen position their nets and topsails to catch the mature fish that migrate from Lake Koycegiz to the sea to lay their eggs on the sandy bottom. To prepare Haviar, the egg sacks are salted for 45 to 90 minutes then carefully rubbed; afterwards, the eggs are left in the shade to dry. The dried egg sacks are dipped in beeswax, which forms a protective coating that keeps them preserved up to a year. Haviar is best enjoyed grated as a condiment or thinly slivered in salads

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Ege Bölgesi

Production area:Village of Dalyan, on the southwestern Turkish coast

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Fish, sea food and fish products

Nominated by:Frank Marciano