The ‘c’ in macun is pronounced like a ‘j’. The ‘u’ isn’t like in ‘up’ but more like the ‘ou’ sound in ‘bouquet’.
It’s a little lolly on a stick made from sugar and flavouring and traditionally sold at panayırs or outdoor fairs. It’s also sold at festivals like the one I have just attended in Edirne celebrating the Romany rites of spring called Hidrellez.
This event falls on the 5th and 6th May every year not only in Edirne which is in eastern Thrace on the way to Greece and Bulgaria and about three hours away from Istanbul by bus, but other parts of the country too. But Edirne is a pretty big centre for this. You could visit it from Istanbul in a day.
We all fell in love with the city which has a truly imperial presence since it was the Ottoman capital until the fall of Constantinople in 1453. The beautiful mosques with their slender minarets are well worth visiting. Selimiye is the jewel in the crown and they say Architect Sinan’s masterpiece. The city was originally called Adrianople after the Roman Emperor who founded it just to show you how old it is.
That the weather couldn’t have been better and that music and dance were in the air made our two days there truly memorable.
And no, I confess, I didn’t try the macun myself … I fear those flavours are rather artificial judging by the colours. I asked if the green was mint: no, he said, it’s kiwi!
We used to have a macuncu in our village of Assos but he has long gone. He was special in that he used to use a screwdriver to twirl his lollies!