Cilbir…Turkish Eggs

Spiced brown butter
Garlicky thick creamy yogurt
Nestled poached eggs
Butter, chilli, garlic and dill
Milder Cilbir without birds eye chillies

There are those mornings you fancy something quick but you want flavour and taste explosion to wake you up…
This is it…Cilbir, pronounced Chil-bir, an amazing Turkish dish that will wake you up!
Well it does me!

It reminds me of our traditional Indian chaats that embodies yogurt and fresh herbs with a temper of spices. How food translates over borders and cultures I think is incapsulated in this type of dish.

Don’t be put off by the combination of ingredients, trust me its just so delicious and simple as you will soon find out that you will have it again and again.
Great hangover cure in my opinion!


4 eggs
1 cup of Thick Greek yogurt at room temp.
1 small clove garlic, minced
1 tsp chilli flakes
1 tsp chilli powder (adjust to taste)
50g good dairy butter
Salt to taste
2 tbsp chopped fresh dill
4 eggs
1 tbsp white vinegar


Whisk the yogurt, garlic and salt untill smooth and then place onto 2 dish. Spread out creating swirling indents.

Mince the garlic
Add to the yogurt
Yogurt with garlic and salt

In a pan bring some water to boil. Add the vinegar which helps keep the egg white together. This is optional, you can poach an egg without vinegar but I recommend it, especially for your first few times. Unless you add a large amount of vinegar, the taste won’t transfer to your egg!

Rolling boil
Add white vinegar

Reduce to gentle simmer then use a wooden spoon to stir the water to create a vortex. This helps create spherical poached eggs and keep the egg white together.
Gently crack an egg into a cup and slip into the water. I use a ladle for ease.

Crack egg into cup or ladle
Gently drop into swirling vortex

Let the egg white set. About 3 minutes, no more. We want soft runny yolks. Keep close and use a timer. Overdone yolks don’t work so well on eating!

Gently simmer
Let the whites set

Remove with slotted spoon and drain on partchment with kitchen paper towel. Poach all 4 eggs, separately.

Remove with slotted spoon
Drain on kitchen towels

While the eggs poach, take a small pan.
Heat the butter untill its golden brown…you want sediments caremalising. If like me you like hot add a few dried birds eye chillies to the brown butter!If using whole dried birds eye chillies add now for a minute.

Butter is now brown

Take it of heat give it 30 seconds and then add chilli flakes and chilli powder. Let it infuse.

Chilli powder and flakes


Gently place the poached eggs onto the yogurt.
Sprinkle the fresh dill all over.

Place eggs on yogurt
Add the dill

Drizzle the spiced butter liberally over the eggs and yogurt.

Pour over spiced butter

Cilbir should be served immediately, when all ingredients are warm. Turkish eggs are traditionally served with rustic or crusty bread to scoop up the egg and every last bit of the butter and yogurt sauces.

Serve immediately!

I love serving with some lavash bread.

Serve with any type of bread

Dip your bread into the yolks and yogurt then indulge.

Dive in

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