Ark of taste
Back to the archive >

Tiri is a fresh cheese made from goat milk only. It is resembling to Ricotta. But the method of making this cheese is completely different that Ricotta. It is salty and can be dry. The village of Melemez is a settlements area for migrants from Crete. They used to make this cheese between March and June. Goat husbandry is their tradition. They like to eat goat meat and consumed goat milk products. Today, the name of this village is Bağcılara- Ihsaniye. But the local people still call the village by its former name, Melemez. In 1890 Sultan Abdulhamid sent a ship to island, to take the Muslims back to Anatolia. One group decided not to get off the stop in Izmir. They decided to embark in Mersin. They settled here in this village given to them and they called it Melemez. They used to speak a dialect of Turkish mixed with Greek. They kept their language and culture until 1960. This cheese would exist in all settlements for migrants Crete.
The local community use Tiri ( Mizithsa) for a dish called Lazanya ( Lasagne). It doesn’t look like Italian’s Lasagne. It is layer of small cut cooked handmade pasta. ( They make their pasta by mixing flour and water). One-layer cooked pasta one-layer Tiri cheese. Topped with more cheese and butter with is part of their food habit. Because of climate change and become more humidity warm in spring the locale Tiri producers can not to make dry Tiri now. However, the younger generation thinks this process is to be complicated and it isn’t worth the effort. Still the old members of the families are producing and consuming for their own consumption.

Back to the archive >



Akdeniz Bölgesi

Production area:Bağcılara Melemez

Other info


Milk and milk products

Nominated by:Yasmina Selfun Lokmanoglu