Everyone knows that there are a lot of Turks in Germany, but did you know that Berlin has the third largest population of Turkish people of any city in the world? That being said, you can imagine the near hysterical nature of my inner Turkophilia prior to and during my time in the German capital. 

One of the top priorities on my "Things to do while in Berlin" thesis was to visit the Turkish Market in Kreuzberg. I learnt that the neighbourhood of Kreuzberg is the centre of Turkish immigrant life in the city (and it's also the upcoming hipster hangout but this, my friends, is for another post) and the Türkenmarkt is the largest Turkish market in the city. 

The first Friday I was there, which would be June 8, I U-Bahn'd myself over to Maybachufer to get an early start on the stalls. "If you can find it in Turkey, you can find it here" seemed to be the general essence that wafted through the market. From beautiful fruits and vegetables - both local and imported - to a range of cheeses, meats and fish, and fresh bread and simit, you could find it all! A foodie's delight, no doubt. There were tons of interesting stalls which sold fabric, embellishments, and even varieties of cezves (the pot used for making Turkish coffee). I was intrigued, and wanted them all. 

The weather was cool and perfect and it was a lovely, sunny day. The Turkish Market is definitely a to-do while in Berlin. On that note, I must say that I was a little let down. Was it my astronomically high expectations? Was it the greasy, overly crispy, gözleme I ate that put me off? Was it the fact that the market was actually much smaller than I thought it'd be? I suppose it was a little of all the above coupled with the fact that there were only two or three hot food stalls (of which one had traditional Ghanaian fare laid out wat, and the other was the awful, fast-food quality gözleme place). I love me some Turkish food, so I was looking forward to more variety.

It is without a doubt that I'll revisit the Türkenmarkt when I return to Berlin. 
But I do hope that next time I'm back I'll be greeted by more kebaps, börek, and non-greasy gözleme. ;)


 The Türkenmarkt sets up shop parallel to this lovely canal. Boats full of people cruised by as people relaxed and munched on snacks bought from the market. While I was here, a girl with a SOAS bag came and sat next to me and after brief conversation I learnt she recently graduated. Us SOASians really are all over the world!

Note the painted computer monitors lodged between the branches.

 These dolmas were fresh, perfectly seasoned and ooohh so pretty. 
Washed down with ayran, I couldn't imagine a better lunch.

 After I toured the market and found myself a seat for a bit of rest, I recognized someone walking towards me - it was Fiona, a sweet Scottish woman who was staying in the same hostel room as me (in the bunk below me, in fact!). These random bump-ins are such a nice change when you're travelling alone!

Several varieties of fresh Turkish loaves and simit (the sesame seed covered, doughnut shaped bread in the upper right corner) for sale. 

 There were quite a few of these counters stuffed with a range of marinated seafood and dips.  These stores were perpetually packed with people buying grams and grams of the deliciousness pictured above to their heart's content. 

 Dang, look at the size of those shrimps.

 Succulent black and green zeytin (olives). Typically Turkish.

 It seems Istanbul's very own Mişir Çarşısı (Egyptian Market) has now made an appearance in....Berlin? 
This awkwardly taken picture was rushed thanks to the mob of people surrounding me. 

To begin this shindig on a warm, fuzzy note I decided to start by posting about something very near and dear to my heart. Currywurst. 

While I was in Berlin for eight days this June, the city's obsession with currywurst was strikingly apparent. And this obsession treated me just fine. From men with portable sausage grills strapped to their bodies in Alexanderplatz, to the numerous German 'fastfood' chains in almost all U-Bahn and S-Bahn stations, currywurst was everywhere. And why shouldn't it be? It's affordable, it's a wholesome snack, and can a meal that consists of a juicy, hot sausage with a creamy, delicious, tangy tomato-curry sauce really be all that bad? Thought so.

This was my first currywurst of the trip -  at a small outdoor cafe right in front of Brandenburg Gate. It was 'mit Darm' which, I gathered from the flustered German lady serving me, was 'with skin'. The contrast between the crispy skin casing and soft meat inside was a fabulous surprise in my mouth.

This was from a ridiculously cheap stall on one of Ostkreuz station's platforms (I'm pretty sure it was Ostkreuz), which sold many varieties of two specific items - coffee and sausage. This wasn't currywurst - I decided to be adventerous and order a bratwurst with pommes (mmmm). I doused the fries with what I thought was salt, but was actually sugar. Whoops. Also, I wasn't a huge fan of the smoky bratwurst flavour. But all in all, the crispy, delightful pommes made up for the entirety of the meal. Good times.

 Located a few steps away from the Mehringdamm U-Bahn station is Curry 36, which allegedly serves Berlin's best currywurst. The queue up to the tiny window counter, where you both place and receive your order, is perpetually long, and the tables outside packed. 
The lady with the blue bag, I, and a few other strangers were sharing one of the tables above. As I prepared to tuck into my own currywurst, she proceeded to say Guten Appetit to everyone on the table. Awww. 

The star sausages at Curry 36. I'm not entirely sure of its name, but on the right is a sausage which is covered with skin and then deep fried. The wurst that I ordered is pictured on the left. What I didn't get a picture of is the counter on the left, which holds German hamburger-like patties, and this meaty goulash-type soup/stew. 

Currywurst mit pommes rot-weiss - isn't she just a beaut. Curry 36 is famous for their own brand of curry sauce. The sauce had a nice texture to it - chunky and flavourful. Personally, though, the sauce was a tad bit too sweet for my liking and this wasn't my favourite currywurst meal of the trip (sacrilege, I know).

Having said that, it didn't stop me from polishing off my food. Tip for next time: hold off on the extra serving of curry sauce.

My name is Disha and important things you should know about me include (but aren't limited to) my love for Turkey, German football, and travelling. I'm 19 years old, and I currently live in London, where I attend university - BA Politics and Social Anthropology, what whaat?

I love to write, take pictures, and document my days, so it's a little strange I haven't started a blog yet. Perhaps it's got something to do with my high aptitude for procrastination and laziness. Together with my inept technological skills, I can see fun times ahead... 

One thing you should know is that a lot of my posts will cover past events, happenings, and memories. Nostaslgia for the win, I know. 

I hope you enjoy your time here, and let me know what you think. 

Kendine iyi bak (take care). 


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