As a result of the diversity of products and the people, a very rich cuisine developed in Tekirdağ.
Tekirdağ Köftesi (Tekirdağ meatballs), Tekirdağ Peynir Helvası (cheese dessert), Hayrabolu Dessert, Şarköy Olive and Olive Oil, Çerkezmüsellim Pabuç Köfte, Malkara Cheese, Saray (water buffalo) Yoghurt, Saray Bolet Mushrooms, Şarköy Vinegar, Grape Molasses, İnecik Sucuk (semi-dried beef-based sausage made by a dry-curing process), Gaziköy Sage (Adaçayı), Velimeşe Boza (traditional fermented grain drink) and Kelle Paça (offals) soup are only a couple of the delicacies and dishes showcasing the gastronomical riches of the city.
Registered as geographical indication, Tekirdağ köftesi (meatballs) is unique on several counts: the meat is from cows pastured in nature, it is prepared and rested for 24 hours after preparation and chargrilled. Served with a special chilli paste and traditionally served with ayran (yoghurt drink), and often followed by Tekirdağ peynir helvası (cheese dessert).
Tekirdağ Peynir Helvası
Almost 70% of the main ingredients of the dessert is unsalted local fresh cheese. The main difference of Peynir Helvası specific to Tekirdağ and Höşmerim (of other parts of Türkiye) is the use of flour instead of semolina in the production of the dessert and the classic stringy texture peculiar to the dessert.
Malkara Eski Kaşar Peyniri
Malkara is the spot for cheese and dairy products in Tekirdağ. Dairy products produced in Malkara are nationally recognized and admired by foodies. The most important and one of the most delicious cheeses of Tekirdağ is Malkara Eski Kaşar (aged cheese), a registered geographical indication; visitors are highly recommended not to leave the region before trying it.
The main ingredient of Bulama is the must obtained from grapes (grape juice). It is first made into molasses and then, turned into the creamy product with çöven otu (gypsophila). Bulama is difficult to prepare yet too delicious to forget.
The vineyard and wine culture in the region go back to ancient times. In the past, the region’s fine wines were transported from the ports of the region such as Mürefte, Hoşköy, Gaziköy, Uçmakdere to Mediterranean ports in amphoras. Şarköy, which is an important district of Tekirdağ in terms of tourism, is now a brand in wine production with its terroir (soil composition and climate) suitable for viticulture. The winemakers focus on two groups: local indigenous varieties such as Yapıncak, Şensu, Papazkarası, and classics like Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and Merlot. You can follow the regional wine route to visit vineyards, smell different varieties of wine and have a special dining experience.
Olive and olive oil
Şarköy is renowned also for its olives and olive oil. Main features that distinguish Şarköy’s olive oil from other regions are its thick consistency and its distinctive aroma.