19 Ağustos 2007 Pazar

Where does the name "Turkish Delight" come from?

When Hacı Bekir manufactured lokum, it was called "Rahatu'l-Hulkum" which meant "comfort of the throat" in Arabic. The name "lokum" comes from there. You really feel a delicious comfort after you eat the lokum. The "rahatu'l-hulkum" name becomes Rahat Lokum in time. And after a while the "rahat" is forgotten, "lokum" is left to be used even centuries later.

In the beginning of the 18 th century, Bahçekapı was not only the center of Istanbul but also the center of the whole Ottoman Empire. After arriving to İstanbul in 1777, Hacı Bekir had also opened his first lokum shop in Bahçekapı. Kapalıçarşı (Grand Bazaar) is there, Mısır Çarşısı (Egyptian Bazaar) is there, Babıali (the bureacratic center of the empire) is also there, the Sirkeci Train Gar. When the tourists come, they go to Bahçekapı straight.
Misbah Haydar, the daughter of the military commander of Mekke wrote in her book titled "Arabesque" these words: "Everyone who claims to know Middleeast, must know lokum manufacturer Hacı Bekir. "
Again in those days an Englishman comes to the Hacı Bekir lokum shop in Bahçekapı, tastes it, finds it delicious and takes some back to his country with him. Of course, because the English can't pronounce "Rahatu'l-Hukum" he says "Turkish Delight" to those who want to learn what it is. And later on its name stays to be "Turkish Delight". The French call it "lokum", but the English speaking world continues to call it "Turkish Delight" until this day.

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