Helva is a typical sweet in Turkey (and the Balkans, Levent, Middle East, and Greece) made with sesame paste (tahini), sugar, and an emulsifier, often egg whites. Sometimes helva is mixed with nuts, as it is here with pistachios. I often have a slice of it with tea, letting the heat of the tea dissolve the sugary helva on my tongue.

NB: There are also two other types of helva-irmik helvası made with semolina and un helvası made with flour, butter and pine nuts.

2016-01-07T14:38:17+00:00 March 21st, 2009|Categories: Istanbul, Sweets & Dessert, Turkish Cuisine|2 Comments


  1. Tom April 13, 2009 at 6:21 pm - Reply

    Almost looks like the Italian torrone morbido; in fact, the sugar, egg whites and nust are exactly like torrone. Is it at all similar?

  2. Ali July 17, 2010 at 2:56 pm - Reply

    It makes me have fish and helva after 🙂 Thanks!

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