What is the Story of Iskender Kebab?

The story of iskender kebab, one of the well-known tastes of Bursa province, started in 1867 from Mehmet's son Iskender Efendi's shop in Kayhan, Bursa province. 19th century Until the second period, the lamb was cooked in a coal furnace. Turning the lamb continuously in this way also did not cook all the meat. It was difficult to share the flavors of different parts of the lamb. The oils that flowed with the effect of the heat would drip onto the coal, and then the smell and smoke would disturb the environment.

İskender Efendi developed a method to eliminate this situation at an early age. After separating the lamb meat from its bones, he put it on a stick and started cooking it on the stove. With the method he developed, he turned the meat and cooked it equally on all sides. The most delicious parts of lamb meat were served to customers without burning. This is how the doner kebab, which plays an essential role in our taste culture, was invented. Many types of kebab have emerged with this cooking method and are sometimes served with eggplant and sometimes with lavash bread.

How is Iskender Kebab prepared to serve most deliciously?

Doner kebab prepared with lamb meat is placed in front of the stove. Doner is cooked slowly on this fire. After cooking, it is cut thinly from top to bottom with a knife. It becomes strips of lamb. The plate is heated on the grill for service, and Turkish pitas are cut and placed at the bottom. Tomato sauce is poured over the pita. Before the pitas get cold, they are covered with lamb slices. Immediately after these processes, heated butter is poured. Served with roasted peppers, tomatoes, and yogurt.

If you are looking for things to eat in Istanbul, you are at the right place.

Where are the best places to eat Iskender Kebab in Istanbul?

The most famous: Bursa Garaj Kebap, BEŞİKTAŞ

Bursa Garaj Kebab, located in Istanbul Beşiktaş, offers the most famous flavor of Bursa to its customers without sacrificing quality. Besides Iskender, pickled cucumbers are worth tasting at the restaurant.

With its impressive view: Uludağ Et Lokantası, FLORYA

It offers service in FLORYA, one of the precious districts of Istanbul, by the sea and next to the Historical Atatürk Marine Mansion, with its unique view where green and blue embrace. You can also start your Sunday with an open buffet breakfast.

Which has not spoiled its quality for years In Beyoğlu: Bursa Kebapçısı, BEYOĞLU

You can eat a quality iskender kebab in this small place as in Bursa. Their pitas are their own production and crispy. If you are going to eat here, we recommend drinking cider with it.

So many types of meat: Kasabım Ethane,BEYOĞLU

The company, which has more than sixty years of experience in the meat sector, offers many varieties such as tenderloin, beef cutlet, smoked meat, entrecote, lamb tandoori. The kebab they prepare by choosing the best meat will not be like anything you have eaten before. 

Magnificent Bosphorus View: Borsa Restaurant, ÜSKÜDAR

Serving against the Bosphorus view in Adile Sultan Palace, this restaurant offers Ottoman and Turkish cuisine menus. Besides the delicious iskender kebab, you have so many traditional options that you may have a hard time deciding. 

Great desserts: Niyazibey Iskender,ÜSKÜDAR 

We recommend Niyazibey special iskender kebab followed by semolina halva with ice cream or künefe. Don't forget to ask for the pan yogurt separately if you go here.

If you want to go and eat iskender kebab outside of the places we recommend, you can provide direct transportation from Sabiha Gökçen to Bursa. While you are eating iskender kebab which is famous, you will also see the historical structure of Bursa. If you want to make a journey by taking in the sea air, you can go to Bursa with IDO from two different points, Pendik and Yenikapı. 

Making Iskender Kebab at Home

Ingredients for Making Original Iskender kebab at Home 

  • 400 g lamb meat

  • 4 tablespoons of butter

  • salt and pepper

  • tomato sauce

  • pita bread

  • yogurt

  • tomatoes and peppers for roasting 

Refrigerate for half an hour to slice the meat easily. Cut thinly and cook with oil, salt, and pepper in a pan. In a separate saucepan, heat the butter for the sauce. Add tomato puree and hot water and let it boil. Melt the butter in a separate pan and throw the chopped pita into it. Fry tomatoes and peppers for serving. Spread the lightly fried pita on the serving plate. Drizzle tomato sauce on it and place the fried meat. Melt the butter and drizzle over the strips of lamb. Place yogurt, fried tomatoes, and peppers next to it. Happy eating!

Frequently Asked Question

What are Turkish kebabs called?
Turkish kebabs can be called Adana, spicy, Iskender or more.
What does iskender mean in Turkish?
Iskender is a form of thin kebab slices usually eaten in Turkey.
Is kebab originally from Turkey?
Yes, kebab originates from the Ottoman Empire.
Which country invented kebab?
It is known that kebab originated from Turkey in the 14th century.
Why is it called kebab?
Kebab, in Arabic, means roasted meat.