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May 20, 2019

Fatma’s Sweets: Carrying On, With Cakes

By Dima Al Sayed and Noama Fawakhirjy
Istanbul -- Like most Syrians who fled their war-ravaged country and made their way to Turkey, Fatma Jabal, a 19-year-old from Aleppo now living in Istanbul, had to get creative in order to make a living. With a baby boy to take care of and her husband struggling to provide for their family while working as a carpenter, Fatma tapped into something she’s been doing since she was a child: baking cakes and cookies.Read more
Istanbul -- Like most Syrians who fled their war-ravaged country and made their way to Turkey, Fatma Jabal, a 19-year-old from Aleppo now living in Istanbul, had to get creative in order to make a living. With a baby boy to take care of and her husband struggling to provide for their family while working as a carpenter, Fatma tapped into something she’s been doing since she was a child: baking cakes and cookies.

Making desserts had been something Fatma has loved from early on growing up in Aleppo, which she left in 2014 in the midst of the worsening conflict there. For her, each treat she bakes is a work of art that just happens to be edible. “The first thing I did in the kitchen was sweets,” she says. But Fatma realized she needed to develop her budding baking prowess to start charging customers. Cake-decorating classes would have been unaffordable, so Fatma to the Internet, learning from YouTube channels and Facebook pages dedicated to teaching the art of fondant, the malleable sugar-based icing used for making visually stunning cakes. Eventually, an experienced professional got in touch with Fatma over Facebook after her seeing her growing talent, helping her to improve.Read more
May 14, 2019

Sought-after fresh spring specialties in Istanbul

By
BACKSTREET FEED -- On our Born on the Bosphorus walk, we visit the fresh market in Beşiktaş where vendors boast fresh erik (sour green plums), çağla (unripe almonds) and types of local kiraz (cherry). The taste peak for these spring specialties is somewhat short, leaving expats to hunt for vendors that will ship early and fast enough.Feed more