Image via WikipediaAtaturk Çiçeği - you know it better as the red pointsettia (Euphorbia pulcherrima). Native to South America, it now grows in Turkey and other parts of the world. Some even get as large as a small shrub. They get kind of leggy when you grow them outside, though.
Ataturk (the first president of modern Turkey) must have liked them or something, because the Turks named the plant after him. What they called it before he showed up is anyone's guess. Maybe the arabic name for it, "Bint el Konsul", meaning daughter of the Consul? Poinset (who claims the English name for the flower) was the Consul in Egypt at one time.
Most of Turkey's population is Muslim, but a lot of us (probably a majority) celebrate the New Year on January 1st with the rest of the world, exchanging gifts, etc... During the winter holiday season, many malls and homes display the pointsettia proudly. "New Year" trees are usually plastic, but I've seen some showstoppers made out of live pointsettia plants.
So there you have some interesting trivia to talk about over crudités this season!