Turkey // North Central Anatolia //

Putting the Safran back into Safranbolu

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Safranbolu is famed for growing saffron, and even took its name from the precious herb. Although production fell to almost nothing before a recent revival, it’s now quite possible to buy some to take home, or sample its taste in locally made sweets such as safran lokum and helva. You can purchase them – or munch free samples if you’re feeling cheeky – in the ubiquitous pastanes. A number of local restaurants claim to serve meals made with saffron, but beware – many simply colour the food (and, in many cases, “saffron” tea) with Indian Yellow dye.

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