We awoke to bright sunshine and a good Turkish breakfast – olives, cucumbers, tomatoes, cheese, little thin pancakes, toasted bread, jam and fresh fruit. Our Turkish guide, Serdar Akerdem, tells us “If you want to know people, you should eat with the people and you should eat what they eat!” And I believe that is true, and that one of the ways to access a country’s culture and history is through its cuisine.
Çökertme is a very small town, just a collection of little houses along the shoreline, a few restaurants and a small simple hotel. Serdar tells us that there is an ancient architectural site near here that has not been excavated yet. We took a short walk through the town and then returned to the restaurant, Captain Ibrahim’s. The owner is a former sponge diver who runs the restaurant with his family. It’s simple but pretty, with tables under an arbour in dappled shade, with a view of the beach. We went to the kitchen and had a cooking lesson from the young chef, Umit, who is trained in the cuisine of the Ottomans. He took us step by step through the making of an octopus stew, and later we sat on the patio and ate the stew, with salad and calamari.
Back on the boat, we sailed for a while then anchored in another quiet bay where we kayaked and searched for ancient shards on the beach and had a swim.
Photos by Barbara Ramsay Orr