PUTNEY -- Over the last few weeks, Erhan Oge tested some Turkish dishes out on customers and friends at his pizzeria. Those foods will now be available everyday.
"They knew I was Turkish and make good food, so I decided to do it," he said.
Putney Village Pizza began officially serving Turkish meals on Thursday, July 31. Since pizza does not take too long to make, Oge was willing to take on some new items.
Additions to the menu include stuffed zucchini, zucchini pancakes, beef casserole with vegetables, vegetable casserole, eggplant moussaka, sigara boregi, tabbouleh, izmir koftesi, Turkish meatballs and beef and chicken kabobs. There will also be lentil and chicken soups made in a Turkish style as well as Turkish appetizers and Turkish rice.
"All this food, you have to chop and marinate all the meats," said Oge. "Some things we have to do a day before. It takes a lot, but we're here all day anyway."
The pizzeria is open six days a week from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. It is closed on Mondays.
Oge said he believes the new items will bring in some new clientele.
"People ate it and they told their friends. Slowly, they're coming," he said. "At least seven or eight families in town go to Turkey regularly."
Although during his 16 years of owning the pizzeria, Oge slowed down on preparing Turkish meals at home, he had plenty of experience cooking with his wife.
Before coming to the United States, he made ceramics that were sold in Turkey.
Oge arrived in the United States in May 1998. He lived in New Jersey for a few months before moving to Brattleboro then Putney. After making pizzas in Brattleboro for five years, he bought Putney Village Pizza. He also owned the Putney General Store for just over two years.
That building was sold to the Putney Historical Society after a fire in May 2008.
"I think 30 or 33 fire trucks came. It was big," he said.
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