• Yield: Serves 4

  • Time: 10 minutes, plus overnight soaking prep, 1 hour, plus cooling time cooking

Region: Malatya, all regions

A favourite of the pre-dawn (sahur) meal observed during Ramadan. Some versions omit the olive oil, spices and parsley.

The Turkish Cookbook The Turkish Cookbook by Musa Dağdeviren


  • 1 (1 kg / 2 lb 3 oz) veal tongue

  • 2 cloves

  • 2 black peppercorns

  • 3 fennel seeds

  • 1 tbsp lemon juice

  • 2 tsp dried oregano

  • 1/2 tsp dried chilli (red pepper) flakes

  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin

  • 1 bunch flat-leaf parsley, leaves picked

  • 2 tbsp olive oil


Put the veal tongue into a pressure cooker with 1.5 litres (6 1/4 cups / 50 fl oz) water, the cloves, peppercorns, fennel seeds and lemon juice. Cook for 1 hour. Let cool, then skin, de-bone and slice into 3-mm (1/8-inch) pieces. In a separate bowl, mix the dried oregano, dried chilli (red pepper) flakes and cumin with 1/4 teaspoon each of black pepper and salt.

Arrange the parsley leaves on a serving platter and place the veal tongue slices on top. Drizzle the veal tongue with some olive oil and sprinkle with the spice mixture before serving.

From The Turkish Cookbook by Musa Dağdeviren. Photography by Toby Glanville. Copyright 2019 Phaidon.