This Antalya style Turkish white bean salad recipe with jammy soft boiled eggs makes you my take on Antalya usulü piyaz – a Turkish white bean salad made the Antalya way. Traditionally, the cold, soupy, garlicky white beans are topped with tomatoes, onions and hard-boiled eggs. I blend the white beans for a hummus-like texture, pile on a salad of cherry tomatoes, purple shallots and fresh herbs, and top with jammy eggs.
Our Antalya usulü piyaz recipe will make you my take on an Antalya style Turkish white bean salad. Antalya piyaz is the most quintessential dish of Antalya, a beautiful beachside city on the Mediterranean in southwest Turkey where we spent some months writing guidebooks in an Ottoman house in the Old Town years ago.
Very different to fasulye piyazi, the traditional Turkish bean salad you may have eaten at restaurants in Istanbul and elsewhere in Turkey, Antalya piyaz is unique to Antalya and the surrounding region. Also called tahinli piyaz, as the white bean sauce is made with tahini, it’s on the menu at almost every Antalya eatery, from sit-down restaurants to simple take-away spots.
While you could order Antalya piyaz with the Turkish bread, pide, as a snack, or the white bean salad as one of an array of dishes for a Turkish feast, Antalya piyaz is customarily served with köfte or Turkish meatballs, when in that case the meal is called köfte piyaz. I’ll be posting a köfte recipe soon.
Going out for köfte piyaz or taking it away to eat at home or on a picnic in one of Antalya’s many seaside parks is something of a local ritual. A typical order would include charred roasted green peppers, a side salad of tomatoes, cucumbers and lettuce, salty yogurt drinks called ayran (a must with köfte) and tatlı, traditional Turkish desserts.
This Antalya style Turkish white bean salad recipe is this week’s edition of Weekend Eggs, our 12-year-old series of recipes for egg dishes from around the world. We’ve published Weekend Eggs randomly in recent weeks, but from hereon you can expect regular weekly egg recipes for breakfast eggs, brunch eggs, lunch eggs, and dinner eggs, from places we’ve travelled, lived in and loved.
If you’ve arrived here for the first time, we started Weekend Eggs back in 2010 when we launched Grantourismo with a yearlong global grand tour aimed at promoting slow, local and experiential travel, more sustainable, ethical, engaging, and immersive forms of travel.
On that 12-month trip we spent two weeks in each destination, staying in apartment rentals and holiday homes to get an insight into how locals lived their lives. In each place we settled, we explored the local food, connected with local cooks and chefs, and learnt to cook local specialties, which we shared in two series, The Dish and Weekend Eggs.
If you’re an eggs lover and particularly a lover of breakfast eggs dishes, we encourage you to dig into our Weekend Eggs archive (link above) for inspiration and ideas. Or browse our collections of our 21 best breakfast recipes and our all-time 12 most popular Weekend Eggs recipes in 12 years of Grantourismo, which we compiled as part of Grantourismo’s 12th birthday celebrations earlier this year.
Now before I tell you more about my take on Antalya usulü piyaz, a Turkish white bean salad made the Antalya way, we have a favour to ask. Grantourismo is reader-funded. If you’ve enjoyed our recipes or other content on the site, please consider supporting Grantourismo. You could buy us a coffee and we’ll use that donation to buy cooking ingredients for recipe testing or contribute to our epic original Cambodian cuisine history and cookbook on Patreon.
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Turkish White Bean Salad Recipe with Soft Jammy Eggs for Antalya Style Piyaz
I’ve said this is my take on the Antalya style Turkish white bean salad recipe for Antalya usulü piyaz, as I’ve made tweaks. My white bean base is creamier and denser in consistency than the traditional soupy white bean salad; it’s more like this hummus-style butter bean dip in texture.
I use cherry tomatoes instead of large tomatoes, purple shallots in lieu of white onions, and jammy soft-boiled eggs rather than hard-boiled eggs. That’s not to say I don’t like the original Antalya style Turkish white bean salad recipe.
We adored the food of Antalya when we spent some months there years ago writing up travel guidebooks from two lovely apartments we rented in a grand Ottoman-era sandstone house in Antalya’s Old Town.
Initially we rented an elegant ground floor apartment for the first part of our trip, and later, after we returned from staying in a friends’ villa in Kas, we shifted into the cosy attic apartment upstairs in the same handsome old house. It had a sunny terrace and views over the Old Town rooftops and a litter of kittens that we raised.
We loved our time in beautiful Antalya and Antalya’s style of Turkish food, which is a bit different to what you might have eaten in Istanbul, western Turkey, or central and northern Turkey, because Turkish cuisine is so regional.
Antalya has ancient trading ties to other Mediterranean settlements, especially to Greek, Cyprus and the countries of the Levant, and those historic connections have left their marks on Antalya’s cuisine, distinguishing it from other regional Turkish cuisines in small ways. This salad is a perfect example.
We’ve travelled over much of Turkey, and settled into Istanbul for two weeks on our last trip, yet the months spent in Antalya and on the southern Mediterranean coast were some of our most memorable – partly because the longer you spend in one place, the deeper your connection, even if we spent so much time tied to our desks meeting writing deadlines.
An apology in advance if my take on the Antalya style Turkish white bean salad recipe for Antalya usulü piyaz offends any Turkish people. I don’t believe my tweaks affect the nature of the dish to such an extent as to change the essence of what is a wonderful dish.
When that happens, I don’t get why cookbook authors don’t simply rename the dish they’ve transformed beyond recognition; acknowledge the origin and inspiration by all means, which is the right thing to do, but why call it something it’s not.
I hope my take on the Antalya style Turkish white bean salad recipe for Antalya usulü piyaz is considered to be just another iteration of a delicious Antalya specialty.
Tips to Making this Turkish White Bean Salad Recipe for Antalya Style Piyaz
Just a few tips to making this Antalya style Turkish white bean salad recipe for Antalya style piyaz, starting with the white beans. The white bean family includes beans such as haricot beans, navy beans, cannellini beans, and butter beans.
Traditionally, Turkish cooks have used kuru fasulye or dried haricot beans for Turkish white bean salad recipes. But historically, a specific variety called Çandır beans has been used in Antalya style piyaz.
The Çandır beans are partly what gave Antalya style piyaz its unique Geographical Indication (GI) status. This lapsed, however, as the production of Çandır beans, long grown around the village of Yarbaşçandır, in the Çandır region in the foothills of Konyaaltı district in Antalya province, came to a standstill.
As that impacted the GI status of Antalya piyaz, earlier this year local authorities banded together to reinvigorate production and promotion of Çandır beans, coordinating planting of crops and a Çandır Dry Bean Festival after the harvest and drying period, to celebrate the beloved bean and Antalya piyaz.
You’d therefore be forgiven for using haricot beans, also known as navy beans, and you certainly wouldn’t be committing any crimes against Antalya style piyaz for using cannellini beans or butter beans – even canned butter beans, or canned cannellini beans, which are our favourite and commonly used by Turkish cooks these days.
I prefer to use canned butter beans, also known as Lima beans as they originated in Peru, and cannellini beans, as I prefer their earthy taste and creamy, buttery texture. They also break down easily, making them easy to mash if you don’t have a blender.
If you’re starting with dried haricot beans, or other dried beans, you’ll need to soak the beans overnight before boiling the beans the next day. First, you’ll need to wash and drain the beans, then submerge the beans in cold water and soak them for anything from 8 hours up to 24 hours. The next day, drain the soaked beans, and discard that water (don’t use it!) before boiling the beans.
Alternatively, you can just boil the dried beans, but it’s essential to boil the beans for a minimum of 30 minutes at boiling point (100 °C/212 °F) to deactivate the toxic compound phytohaemagglutinin, which can cause poisoning and nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea – which is why cooking beans in a slow cooker is not safe.
You can then reduce the beans to a simmer and cook them until tender and even soft (but not mushy). The beans can be boiled in either water or stock, or you can add stock and seasoning after you’ve brought the beans to a boil, before reducing the heat.
Canned beans, which have been cooked obviously, are super safe – as well as convenient, less time-consuming to cook, and more affordable. Dried beans are very expensive here, so we tend to use tinned beans.
You’ll need to use a blender to achieve the creamy texture and denser consistency of my white beans, which are more like a creamy hummus, and is what sets my Antalya style Turkish white bean salad recipe apart from traditional Antalya piyaz recipes.
But by all means, do thin the white bean mixture out by adding water to the blender to create more of a sauce and a soupy white bean salad, if you prefer. And if you’re doing that, keep out half the beans.
That soupy white bean sauce is actually called a tarator sauce, and you’ll find it elsewhere in Turkey and the Middle East, especially the Levant and Gulf Arab States, where it’s served with everything from shawarma and falafels to mixed grills, and has a thinner, runnier consistency.
A Turkish tarator sauce typically includes tahini, garlic, cider vinegar, lemon juice, olive oil and salt, sometimes cumin, and water to thin the sauce out. I’ve add natural Greek style yoghurt to the blender for added creaminess.
If you don’t have a blender, you can make the sauce by hand, by first mixing the tahini and vinegar – vigorously whisking if needed to reduce lumps and create a smooth consistency – and then add the garlic and salt, water (start with a couple of tablespoons), lemon juice and olive oil, and keep whisking.
With these more traditional Antalya style Turkish white bean salad recipes, the cooked white beans are then spread out on a serving plate and the sauce is poured over the beans. Elsewhere in Turkey, this would be eaten warm, but in Antalya it’s refrigerated until chilled.
When you’re ready to serve, add the tomatoes, fresh herbs and boiled eggs (see our guide to boiling perfect boiled eggs every single time), and drizzle on some extra virgin olive oil. When everyone is ready to eat, toss the salad at the table.
For a traditional Antalya style Turkish white bean salad recipe, use large tomatoes, which you’ll quarter, white onion slices, hard-boiled eggs, and a mountain of fresh herbs.
With my tweaked Antalya style Turkish white bean salad recipe, I blend the white beans until thick and creamy, add the drained white beans I’ve kept aside, or spread those drained beans on top, then the tomato salad and boiled eggs.
I use cherry tomatoes, purple shallots or Spanish red onions for colour as much as flavour, and whatever fresh herbs I have to hand – I adore fresh dill and celery leaves or mint – and season and dress the salad beforehand for maximum flavour.
I then drizzle on more extra virgin olive oil, arrange the jammy soft-boiled eggs – made according to Terence’s guide for making perfect soft-boiled eggs – and sprinkle on some sumac or ground Aleppo pepper or even chilli flakes just before serving.
For a lunch, some fresh or toasted pita bread, crispy pita chips or even slices of just-baked sourdough are plenty, but for dinner you could serve this with Turkish meatballs, a mixed grill, sausages, lamb cutlets, or a roast chicken.
Turkish White Bean Salad Recipe for Antalya Style Piyaz
- 4 eggs soft-boiled – see our guide to boiling perfect eggs
- 250 g cherry tomatoes halved
- 1 tsp quality sea salt
- 1 large purple shallot or small red onion finely sliced
- 2 tbsp fresh herbs dill, parsley, mint and/or celery leaves, roughly chopped
- 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 400g cans of butter beans of cannellini beans
- 4 cloves garlic roughly chopped
- 4 tbsp natural creamy Greek yoghurt
- 3 tbsp tahini
- 3 tbsp cider vinegar
- ½ lemon juice only
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp white pepper
- 1 tsp ground sumac or Aleppo pepper
- Boil the eggs using our guide to perfect soft-boiled eggs, cool them in cold water, then set the eggs aside.
- To a mixing bowl, add the halved cherry tomatoes, sprinkle the teaspoon of quality sea salt over them, add the finely sliced purple shallot or red onion, one tablespoon of fresh herbs, and one tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, stir to combine well, and set aside.
- Drain the beans, set aside half a can, and add the rest to a blender.
- To the blender, add the garlic, yoghurt, tahini, cider vinegar, lemon juice, remaining extra virgin olive oil, cumin, salt and pepper and blend until well combined and creamy. If too dense, add a tablespoon or two of water and blend again. Taste, and adjust seasoning to suit your palate.
- Scoop out and spread a thick layer onto a large serving plate, and spread the tomato and onion salad on top that.
- Peel the soft jammy eggs and, working with one at a time, hold the egg over the salad, carefully slice it in half, and pop it on top, until you’ve arranged all the eggs on the salad.
- Sprinkle on the ground sumac or ground Aleppo pepper and the remaining fresh herbs, and drizzle on more extra virgin olive oil if needed, and serve immediately – preferably with Turkish lamb or beef kofte.
Please do let us know in the Comments below if you make this Antalya style Turkish white bean salad recipe for Antalya style piyaz, as we’d love to know how it turns out for you, and we’d also appreciate a rating.