For a truly encyclopedic selection of esnaf lokantasi fare, I go to a place called Kanaat, near the ferry landing in Üskudar, a bustling working-class district on Istanbul's Asian shore. In a big, somber room that seems lost in the 1970s, I tour the food displays, ravenously plotting my lunch. Everything one wants to know about Turkish cuisine is here, somewhere. I find zeytinyaðli—green beans, artichokes, celery root, or other vegetables braised in olive oil until luscious and spoon tender—and every kind of stuffed vegetable: cabbage, peppers, eggplant and grape leaves filled with meat or sweetly spiced rice. In the glassed-in kitchen, cooks make Uzbek lamb-and-carrot pilaf, stewed white beans, all types of kofte, and yahni, earthy stews of lamb, tomato, and eggplant. By the entrance, sweets glisten in their dark amber syrup. Fragrant quince chunks, bread pudding with sour cherries—it's a trauma to choose.