Soup Sunday with Ceyda Tavukcular: Turkish pumpkin soup

My inspirational Hippocrates room-mate, Ceyda
My inspirational Hippocrates room-mate, Ceyda

Welcome back to Soup  Sunday. And it’s a special one today for two reasons.

First, because you’re about to be treated to a tastebud trip to Turkey, no less. OK, so it’s not a million miles away from last week’s recipe, but the fact that this is what they eat in Turkey gives it that added magic, as far as I’m concerned.

Second, because this week’s recipe comes from my dear Hippocrates room-mate and my even dearer friend, Ceyda Tavukcular (that’s Jada to you and I. As in Pinkett-Smith). Ironically, her surname literally means “chicken seller”, so maybe her vegan path is a karmic thing?

I’m particularly excited that I’m going to be spending two weeks with her in the summer in her home city of Istanbul, not just to have fun and eat green stuff, but also to work on a couple of projects we dreamed up while on the Health Ed course.

But yes, you’re absolutely right. It’s a dressed-up excuse for visiting sunnier climes and letting off a healthy dose of steam (preferably in a traditional Turkish bath). There’s no fooling you, is there?

By original trade, Ceyda is a graphic designer, but now she’s a Certified Health Educator, her interests have diverged somewhat, particularly in the direction of child nutrition, as well as spreading the word about health mote generally through seminars and talks.

Here’s what she wants to say:

“I believe that we have to live the best life we possibly can, which everybody deserves. My world is created by peace and love. It’s full of trust and joy. We have passion to live this beautiful life. I have committed to creating this world for myself one step at a time. My hope is that one day, our universe will be a free, loving place.

Being a vegan isn’t just about health. It’s about being in that conscious place which makes the world more habitable. Every living creature deserves to live as much as people. Animals are not here for us to eat or to wear; they are not here to feed our babies with their milk. Their milk is for their own babies, just as ours is for our own babies.

Animals are here to live alongside us. I’m glad to save the world and every living creature in it by being a vegan; I’m getting closer to my vision – my real lovely world – day by day, one step at a time.

Find Ceyda’s website at:  (Good luck with the Turkish, everyone! – ed)



500g peeled pumpkin/squash sliced

1 onion, chopped

2 cloves of garlic

1-2 carrots, chopped

2 tsp ground ginger

2 tbsp olive oil

black pepper (to taste)

sea salt (to taste)

Juice of ¼ lemon


Put the onion, garlic and carrot in a pot with the olive oil and cook them for 5 minutes.

Add pumpkin and cook for 3 minutes more.

Add 3-4 cups water on them.

After 30 minutes when all of them get softer, add ginger, black pepper, salt and lemon juice.

Cook for 5 more minutes.

Blend the soup.

Serve hot with rye bread.


Never miss a post!

Enter your email address below to subscribe to my blog, plus receive your FREE 'Going Plant Based' e-guide!

by George

I’m George Dryden - a slightly-off-the-wall-but-in-a-good-way journalist, blogger and almost-raw vegan. In April 2014, I graduated as a Certified Health Educator from the Hippocrates Health Institute, in Florida, USA (more about George)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.