I love going out for breakfast and I was surprised to discover that Turkish people do too! (Warning: please eat breakfast before reading further. Toast is not breakfast!)
The basics of Turkish breakfast are tea, tomatoes and cucumber, black and green olives, fluffy white bread, jams or honey, eggs and cheese. The eggs can be any (or all!) of hardboiled, fried, cheese omlette or soft scrambled with tomatoes and peppers. Any number of items can be included to supplement these breakfast basics.
Breakfast as a social event is even more popular here than in Canada or the US. My school took us for a spectacular island breakfast in our first week, and my homestay marked our last days with a special breakfast. When I went to pay the rent on a Saturday morning, my landlady invited me to join her family for breakfast (the eggs were hardboiled and the jams were homemade). I’ve had breakfast with my students in the local equivalent of a diner before class (sweet roasted pumpkin), and – the best idea ever – breakfast classes!
One of my favourite breakfasts was when I joined a group of friends at Van Kahvaltı Evi (Van Breakfast House) during the holidays. Just like the best breakfast places everywhere in the world, there was a one hour wait for a table that was totally worth it. The tiny tables were packed with families, local hipsters and tourists. In addition to the basics, there were seven (!!) types of cheese, walnuts, yoghurt, greens, parsley and peppers; quince, mulberry, cherry, spicy tomato and blackberry jams; plain honey and honey with cream.
In any case, after a Turkish breakfast there is little thought of lunch. Afiyet olsun!!!