A Typical Autumn at Paçacıoğlu Bağ Evi

Pears, apples, grapes, plums are abundantly shared with neighbors and guests during summer. Our famous pears are at every table, even at the Grand National Assembly’s one. Mulberries picked from the garden are cooked in big cauldrons to obtain molasses and then bottled.

Some other day, muttons are slaughtered, cleaned out, grinded and cooked in big cauldrons once more to be used in winter. The pleasure of dipping a piece of bread into the cauldron is priceless. The cooked meat is then congealed in trays, put into disks and preserved for winter.

Doughs are kneaded; chards are prepared and taken upstairs. All neighbors are there. The dough is rolled out and left to dry on ground cloths. The next day all neighbors are together again to cut ‘yayım’, a traditional pasta. The clatter of working hands is like a back ground music to their chitchats and songs. They won’t forget to make a few trays of 'baklava' and 'suböreği'.

But they wouldn’t stop before making some 'tarhana' as well. This special dish requires a lot of time and effort from kneading, laying out, leaving to dry to finally crumble.

Grapes picked from the vineyard are hung to cords placed at the ceilings of a room upstairs and preserved for winter. Grape molasses, 'şıra' (an unfermented grape juice) and grape vinegar are some of the other preparations. Sour cherry syrup is prepared rather concentrated to be diluted and offered later to winter guests. Apples, pears and quinces from the garden are desiccated to be eaten in cold weathers as a source of energy.

Wheats coming from partaken plots are ground at Değirmenbaşı's miller and kept in storehouses to meet the annual need. Dry pastries are baked in the oven installed in the garden; these delicious pastries are later eaten dipped in water and with walnuts. Picking the walnuts from grandma’s walnut grove, taking out their green hull, drying them, cracking and finally shelling them is an exhausting work.

For a while, the entire neighborhood takes care of these tasks. First in one house, then in another one, it’s all done together. None of these preparations will last until the next fall. Our generous-hearted mother nature feeds us and our beloved ones as we care for her.