Zeytin, Turkish in Ada MI
For the dinner I had Ispankli Tavuk(Spinach Chicken)$13
Grilled cubes of marinated Chicken served on top of sauteed spinach and artichoke With a yogurt dipping sauce. My friend had Beef Hummus $13 cubed beef and lamb pan seared, green and red bell peppers, onions served with hummus. She had them leave out the peppers, but the hummus(in this dish) is more like chick peas done as mashed potatoes. as appetizer we had dolmas(stuffed grape leaves)$6 their take out menu says its grape leaves stuffed with Rice,herbs,currants and pinenuts.but I think it was lamb too, and I didn't find any currants or pine nuts.also on the table a dish of olives, herb dipping sauce(Olive oil based), butter and pita bread and what I would say was Talamee(spelling) bread. we also had Sutlac (rice pudding)a rich and creamy rice dish that is oven baked and topped with cinnamon, served cold. There was live music coming in as we were leaving...maybe about 7:30pm.
My lunch there was lentil soup, more cubed chicken and the coleslaw salad I initially mentioned.
How to describe Turkish food.. You need to like yogurt, lamb, veggies, chick peas, eggplant,feta type cheese, highly sugary flakey, nutty pastries(baklava)lots of spices. Lemons. Olives and olive oil.
Ever eaten Gyros at a street fair, or had baklava? or eaten at an Olgas or Pita House? Hummus from the grocery store is a bland version of homemade. I've also seen meat pies and dolmas from "steve's Back door' in Meijers, ok but I'd rather make homemade but batches are usually big and labor intensive. You can buy some canned stuff in Meijers in the Ethnic aile but fresh is better.
Grand Rapids used to have "Lebanese, if you Please", and I think Sam"s Oasis is still on Kalamazoo, and Pita Houses are around, but Zeytin is a sit down (on Turkish rugs in a booth), cloth napkin, waiters,nice lighting, well presented food type place, with a big menu to try whatever sounds good.
Try the library or bookstore for cookbooks about Middle Eastern food to get an idea of the ingredients.