This eggplant stew is a kind of “creamed” dish so heavenly tasting that the Turkish name means sultan’s delight.
Traditionally, hünkar begendi (pronounced “HOONkar BAYendi”) is traditionally an accompaniment to the spicy lamb stew called tas kebabi. There are two stories told about how this dish came about. The kitchens of the Ottoman sultans were famed for their culinary creations to please the ruler and this dish was said to have been created for Sultan Murad IV (1612-1640). Another story attributes the naming of the dish after it had been requested by Empress Eugénie, the wife of Napoleon III, when she visited the Topkapi palace in the mid- nineteenth century. The kashkaval or kasseri cheese can be found in Middle Eastern, Greek.