Friday, August 31, 2012

Dinner Challenge No. 1 - Site: Bremen

On Saturday the 25th of August, our two clubs finally had their first common event: the Cooking Challenge No. 1.

Bulgur wheat, tomatoes and lemons in Bremen
We had exchanged recipes (German Kartoffelpuffer for Istanbul, Turkish Kisir for Bremen), bought all ingridients and were ready to start.

There were some big differences though: in Istanbul around 15-20 Rotaractors had gathered with perfect summer weather, a big kitchen and an even bigger terrace, while in Bremen we were in five in a small kitchen and with the rain hitting against the windows.

Members of Galatasaray Club cutting potatoes

How could we know that? Well, we used modern technology to make it a truely joint event. Emre, the Bremen Twin Club Coordinator, brought his tablet and "installed" it in the tiny kitchen and switched on Skype.

Aysegül, president of Galatasaray Istanbul Club, did the same on her mobile phone. Both devices had cameras and therefore we could see each other.

Cake in the oven
While the Istanbul girls and guys were peeling and cutting potatoes and onions, we chopped parsley, cooked bulgur and fried onions. We had decided to also go for a Turkish cake, which we had prepared already beforehand. It was baking in the oven and smelled really good while we were preparing the Kisir.


All present Rotaractors were involved in the preparations and it was especially funny to talk to our Turkish friends in the meanwhile and see them preparing a German dish.

Our Kisir started to actually look like on the picture sent by our friends :)

The frying president
As a "side dish", our president Tim had prepared some meat, which  he fried in the meantime.

Daniel and Tim presenting our dinner

While the Kisir was cooling down, we decorated our dinner table, inspired by our friends in Istanbuls, whose table looked absolutely stunning (they showed us via Skype).

And finally we had our dinner!

From left to right: Johanna, Javier, Tim, Daniel and Emre (taking the picture)

Conclusion: It was a great evening, we had lots of fun cooking, and some of us even could improve their cooking skills. But the best thing was definetely the communication with our friends in Istanbul!

For more pictures have a look at our Picasa Album:
1st Dinner Challenge - August 2012

RAC Bremen

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Recipe from Turkey: Kısır

Hi Bremen,

Thanks for the great recipe it seems simple enough to make!
Here is a healthy and yummy one our mom's love to make:



1 cup bulgur wheat, large grain
60 ml olive oil
1 onion, diced
1-2 tbsp tomato paste
1 lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp cumin

First put the bulgur in a large bowl and pour two cups of hot water on it (it should stay like this for 5 minutes). Meanwhile in a medium sized pot, place the onion and olive oil. Cook until the onions turn light brown. Add the salt, tomato paste, lemon juice and cumin.

Then wash and drain the bulgur, and mix it into the pot with a wooden spoon. Cook for about 10 minutes on medium-low heat. Afterwards, cover the lid and set aside for it to cool down.

When it's cold, add in the following:
3-4 tomatoes, diced
4-5 fresh green onions, diced
1 cup chopped parsley
Guten Appetit :)))

Friday, August 24, 2012

German Cooking for Beginners - "Kartoffelpuffer mit Apfelmus"

Dear friends from Istanbul,

here you have the recipe for your house party on Saturday.

We had to think of a typical German recipe, which
  • is good to be eaten in summer, as we guess that in Istanbul it's much hotter than here at the moment.
  • should be without pork
  • is typical for Germany
  • which has ingredients that you for sure can buy in Turkey without searching too hard for them
  • which is possible to translate into English without complications
We decided for a quite simple but very yummy one: "Kartoffelpuffer mit Apfelmus". This means more or less "potatoe pancakes with applesauce" (the internet says, it's a little similar to "Mücver").

Here is the recipe for the Kartoffelpuffer (for 4 people):

You need (for the potatoe pancakes):
12 large potatoes
3 onions
ca. 8 tablespoons flour
2 eggs
   salt and pepper

You need (for the applesauce):
2 kg apples
2 tablespoons sugar
¼ liter of apple juice
  some lemon juice
  a litlle ground cinnamon

How to prepare the potatoe pancakes:
Rub potatoes on a large grater and season with plenty of salt and some pepper. Add eggs and diced onions. Sprinkle with as much flour that the potatoe mass is covered (can be more or less than 8 tablespoons). Stir everything properly. Batch-fry potato pancakes (must swim in oil), drain on paper towels.

How to prepare the applesauce:
Peel the apples and cut them into eighths, remove the seeds free. Put 2 tablespoons of sugar in a saucepan and let it melt until caramelizes (about 2 minutes). Then add apple slices and stir vigorously with reduced heat until the caramelized sugar dissolves from the pot base (about another 1-2 minutes). Then add 0.25 l of apple juice, cover it and cook until the apples are completely soft. Then mash with a potato masher. For the final consistency maybe pour in a little bit more apple juice. Finally, season with sugar, lemon juice and cinnamon to taste. 

Serve the pancakes on a plate with applesauce. You can also put some salt (careful, only a little) or sugar on top of the pancakes, just as you like and if you prefer to eat it sweet or salty.

Guten Appetit!! :)

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Presenting the "Blog Delegates" - Gautier from Bremen

Hello everyone!

I am Gautier Brunet. I am 27 years old and I have been living in Bremen, Germany for a year now.  I was born in Tahiti and grew up in a small town next to Cannes, in Southern France. I studied in Paris and Boston and acquired my initial professional experience in the Netherlands and in France. I am now working as a mechanical engineer on Ariane 5, which is the European launcher.

In my free time I enjoy playing rugby. I am very proud that the Bremen team just moved up to second division.

I am living proof that it is possible to learn the complicated German language in a year when you are motivated. Don't get me wrong, I still have a long way to go to be fluent but people more or less get what I'm trying to say.

I find this experiment really cool and look forward to meeting you all, in Germany or Turkey!

Bisous! :)


Thursday, August 16, 2012


…and some facts which might be interesting for you to know about our lovely hometown!

Dear Rotaractors from Rotaract Club Galatasaray in Istanbul

All of us members as well as guests in Rotaract Club in Bremen are very happy about our new connection, and we all hope the beginning will lead to a stable and long-lasting relationship between our clubs. We are looking forward welcome members of your club here in Bremen, and even more delighted thinking of visiting you in Istanbul next year! :-)

However, I did not write something in our mutual blog before, and because – as I suppose – most of you have not visited Bremen yet, getting to know a little bit about Bremen might be interesting for you, maybe some facts will surprise you, or will, at least, be completely new for you.

In Germany as well as abroad, Bremen is famous for two things of daily life: 

1. Our beloved Werder Bremen football club.To be a real “Bremer” you have to be a fan of Werder Bremen! Maybe we can go to a football match together while some members of your club are visiting us?

2. Beck’s Beer: The second important export, even if the company is not German anymore. The brewery can be viewed during a tour, a point which could be interesting for you as well on a visiting-agenda.

Wherever in Europe, United States, South Africa or even Asia, one of these two items will be known, even if the person you are talking to has no idea where exactly he or she has to map our city.

There are some more famous and well-known objects and places of interest in Bremen. The most important might be the fairytale of the “Bremer Stadtmusikanten” (Town Musicians of Bremen):

Four animals, a donkey, a dog, a cat and a cock, were quite old and without use for their owners anymore, who wanted to kill them. However, they wanted to stay alive, so they decided to flee and walk towards Bremen, where they wanted to work as musicians in the stress of the city. With courage and friendship, they beat a bandit on their way to Bremen and took over his cottage. Although they never reached Bremen, a statue in the city centre of Bremen remind all visitors of their life story.

The forelegs of the donkey are shining golden, because its said: touching them brings good luck to you.

One more famous sight in Bremen is the „Bremer Roland“, a statue which was built in 1404 in front of the townhall.

The Roland is one oft he town’s landmarks, and a sign of freedom. Bremen has a long history of being a free Hanseatic city, and the Bremer are very proud of being citizens in this town.
There are dozens of interesting stories and facts more to tell and pictures to show you, but I hope this first insight has been a little bit interesting. In further articles, I will write more about Bremen, our club and how life in Bremen is like.

See you soon! :)

Treasurer RAC Bremen

Monday, August 6, 2012

Trip to Bremen - Arda from Istanbul Galatasaray

Hi everyone,

Following a long preperation period, I realized that the passport number in my visa was wrong the day before I started out to the supersonic tour of Europe with my dearest friends Emre and Bora. I went to the consulate immediately, expecting an apology (I even thought of the possibility of gaining citizenship for this mistake, yes I seriously did think of this possibility). Whatever... Overall, They didn't even give me a proper apology and I spent my two hours for nothing.
Finally, I got my passport with the visa in it and started a joyous tour of Europe with my dear friend Emre from the Bremen Rotaract Club. We started the trip from Bremen but later on we travelled to Amsterdam, afterwards to the legendary city of Paris, and we finally finished in Prague.

I must say, this has been a great international trip with wonderful memories :)

Arda Arapkirlioglu
Galatasaray Rotaract Club

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Presenting the "Blog Delegates" - Ferdağ from Istanbul Galatasaray

Hello everyone!

I’m Ferdağ from Rotaract Club of Galatasaray, Istanbul.  For this term, I’m the director of Professional Services.

The idea of keeping two different clubs in touch is great! Thanks to Aysegul, Cansu, Johanna and Emre for this. Beacuse we both do great things in our own countries but being international is another important thing of being rotaract and if we make this right, then our successes will be complete!

I am open doing any Professional devlopment projects with you, Bremen people:). I would like to contact with your director and see what we can do together.

Oh and a little info about me as well;
I graduated from Istanbul Technical University, Interior Architecture BS Programme, and continued masters on History of Architecture. Now I’m writing thesis, and holding a junior interior architect position in a little firm. During my bachelor education I lived in Ghent, BE for 1 year as an erasmus student and had chance to visit some places in Germany but never been to Bremen. This project may be a great opportunity to visit you guys in Bremen.

Kind regards

Ferdağ GÖÇEK