A week or so ago I was gifted a box of Turkish Delight from Turkey (no just made in Turkey, actually purchased in Turkey!). I was so excited – I was going to get to try real authentic Turkish Delight. I have been fascinated by the sweet since seeing The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe when I was young, and Edmund was gifted a box by the White Witch. I had never heard of Turkish Delight before then.
The easiest way I can describe Turkish Delight is a square jelly covered in powdered sugar. There are many different variations of Turkish Delight (also called lokum). The top varieties often include chopped pistachios, walnuts, dates or walnuts in the gel. Then there are also assorted fruit flavours including mint, lemon, orange and rose.
According to the box, it is also gluten-free and friendly to vegan and vegetarians.
The box that I was gifted was an assorted fruit box with lemon, orange, and rose. The first one I tried was orange (pictured below) and I was blown away because it was not very sweet! I don’t particularly have the biggest sweet tooth (I generally prefer savoury) so I was pleasantly surprised. It was delicious. The powder on it wasn’t so much that it felt like I was eating a powdered Tim-Bit (where you take one bite and suddenly you’re covered in white powder). There was a slight amount of fall-out but nothing crazy.
The fruit flavour was there, and a subtle sweetness so you could tell it was a treat. The lemon and rose were also heavenly. My husband tried them and he was not a big fan, mainly because he has a huge sweet tooth and these were not sweet enough for him.
Then I started thinking – how does Turkish Delight from Turkey compare to the Turkish Delight that you can purchase in Canada? I needed to know if there was a difference! So off I go googling where to buy Turkish Delight in Canada. At first the results were a bit of a let down. I could have ordered them online, or gone to Toronto, but neither of those were very feasible ideas.
Then I saw it – some Bulk Barns sell it! I got excited – there was a Bulk Barn not far from me and I crossed my fingers that they sold the powdered confection (as the website indicated it was not available in all locations). After work I went straight to the Bulk Barn and YES they sold it. I may or may not have squealed a little bit in the store.
The variety of Turkish Delight they sold was assorted fruit with orange, lemon, rose and mint. At first glance, they did look the same. They were relatively square and covered in powdered sugar. When I got them home and into a bowl so I could take some photographs I noticed that they were definitely covered in more powdered sugar than the ones from Turkey. They’re shape was also less square and looked a little squishy.
Below are a comparison for you, Canada on the left and Turkey on the right.
Well, it was time to taste one. I decided to start with orange since that was the one I had tried first from the box from Turkey. YIKES. Powder everywhere, and my goodness the sweetness. It was overbearingly sweet, especially compared to its Turkish version. They were also softer, the Turkish Delight from Turkey was more firm and chewy. Of course my husband loved the Canadian version because it was so sweet.
Left is Canadian Turkish Delight and right is from Turkey.
When all is said and done, I definitely prefer the Turkish Delight from Turkey, and am savouring the last few pieces I have left.
Have you ever had Turkish Delight, from either Canada or Turkey and what do you think? Any questions I may not have covered above? Let me know in the comments!