The Chronicles of Narnia Introduces America to Turkish Delight

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December 2005, a movie was released by the name of The Chronicles of Narnia – The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe based on the book by C.S. Lewis. It introduced the viewers to four British children living in England during WWII, who have moved into the countryside with their never present uncle. The children are forced to entertain themselves. During a game of hide and seek, the youngest daughter Lucy, came across a beautiful wooden wardrobe. As Lucy climbed to the back of the wardrobe, she found herself standing in the snow in the land of Narnia. Lucy ultimately returns to the wardrobe and tells her siblings about her discovery. Eventually, her brother Edmund follows Lucy through the wardrobe and sees Narnia for himself. Here, Edmund also meets the White Witch, who calls herself the Ice Princess and Ruler of Narnia. She is very interested to hear of Edmund’s siblings. She offers Edmund an irresistible treat to bring his siblings to her ice castle. She offered him Turkish Delight and introduced the American movie audience to this very old candy.

Turkish Delight is said to have originated in the Middle East centuries ago under the name lokum. It has also been referred to as Turkish Paste over the years. Today it is still very popular in the Middle Eastern cultures as well as Europe. Its base is primarily corn starch and sugar; but more modern recipes use gelatin and sugar. Its original flavoring was rose water; however over the century’s fruit juices, such as lemon and orange, have been used for variety. Pistachios and walnuts are commonly added for a different texture. When the mixture sets, it is soft and sticky and is cut into small cubes. It is then dipped in powdered sugar and is best if stored in an airtight container.

Turkish Delight

Two cupfuls granulated sugar

One cupful water

One and one-half envelope granulated sparkling gelatine

Juice of one orange

Juice of one lemon

Red coloring

One-half cupful chopped nut meats

Soak the gelatine in one-half the cold water ten minutes. Put the sugar and remaining water in the kettle and bring to the boiling point, add soaked gelatine and juice of orange and lemon. Boil to 240°, or soft boil, add coloring and nut meats. Beat until creamy, turn into a bread pan, first dipped in cold water, to one inch in depth. Let stand until firm, turn out on board, and cut into cubes; roll in powdered sugar.

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