To me, the most cherished recipes are ones that take me back to my childhood and keep alive the sweet memories of special events or family traditions, and, most importantly, of people associated with them.
One such recipe is for walnut and onion breads, or goz kokesi. It hails from the region of Ordubad, where both my maternal and paternal grandparents were from. Variations of goz kokesi are made in several neighboring regions as well.
I call this recipe an edible time traveler and globetrotter. Here’s why. It was passed down from my maternal great-grandmother to my grandmother, both born and raised in Ordubad, then to my mother, born and raised in the region of Balaken, then to me, a Bakuvian gal. I brought this recipe to the United States where it ended up in my cookbook, “Pomegranates & Saffron: A Culinary Journey to Azerbaijan!” Who would have thought? What an amazing journey, isn’t it?
Let me tell you about these special breads. Typically, they are made for spring holiday, Novruz, along with shorgoghal, shekebura, and other festive savory and sweet bakes. They are prepared in huge batches, to last through weeks-long celebrations.