Gastro News

• 26.07.2017
Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality, Kırkayak Cultural Association* and France Cricao Cultural Association** organized a “Humus workshop” held in MUSEM (Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality Culinary Art Training Centre) together with World Cuisine food designers from France and Venezuela.
With the slogan “No Borders for food “, the event aimed for cultural exchanges. Hummus is one of the most famous dishes around the world. It is economic, easy to prepare and vegan. It provides an environment for sharing, meeting, discussion and it represents multiculturalism. In this project, cultural foods in Gaziantep are being searched and the famous French people prepare their own presentations using their own imagination. The aim of this project: “Coming together, cooking, eating, and creativity are the prescription of this new and delicious cultural project”.
Many domestic and foreign guests attended the event.

* http://www.kirkayak.org
** http://www.cricao.org

• 12.07.2017. Great tastes from small chefs!
During the summer holidays, children can enter the kitchen and discover a different field for talent. Excitement and astonishment of the children cooking and creating great tastes as well as discovering their capacities in the field of gastronomy can be read in their eyes…
The “Children Learning Gaziantep Cuisine workshop” has been starting last year and this year the one-month course program will concern 2 groups from different ages: the 06-10 years old children group on Mondays and Tuesdays, the 11-16 years old children group on Thursdays and Friday. At the end of the course, a certificate of completion will be given to the participants.

• 18.06.2017 International Sustainable Gastronomy Day
On the 18th of June the International Sustainability Gastronomy day was celebrated in Gaziantep. The Culture and Social Affairs Department from Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality organized a “Gastronomic Photography Workshop”; the workshop took place at the Culinary Arts Training Centre (MUSEM).

Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality and the Gifsad worked together on the this gastronomical photography educational workshop, with the collaboration of the famous gastronomic photographer Mehmet Ateş and the photographer for “La Cucina Italiana Magazine” Merve Ece Yılmazverdi who teach to the participants the particularities and details of photography in the gastronomy world. This event called in professionals that are in the field and locals that are interested. In total 26 people attended the workshop.

The mentioned techniques of photography were applied on tea, “unripe wheat stuffed gherkin”, purslane salad, garlic kebab and pistachio-plain cookies.

• 15.06.2017. The traditional “baklava alayi” was brought back to day light
Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality organized under the guidance of the historian writer Talha Ugurluel the traditional “Baklava Regiment”. This event was initially done in the 17th century and was is use until 1826 at the same time as Janissary Corps were abolished. This is the first time that the “Baklava Regiment” is bring back to life since then.

Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality, Culture and Social Affairs Department worked hard to organize the 14th Ramadan Festival. Many locals attended the festival as Gaziantep’s Governor, Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality Lady Mayor Fatma Şahin, District Mayors, Governors, Municipal Protocols, Civil Society Organizations, Association Presidents, Grand Metropolitan Municipal Assembly Members, NGO members and numerous related and interested citizens.

Ayhan Güngör and Talha Uğurluel took part in the presentation of the Baklava Regiment, the latter explaining the tradition of “baklava regiment” while the event began in front of the old Gaziantep Castle. The presentation was being live broadcasted on a screen that was set up in Station Square and the citizens had a chance to follow both the events.

The event that took place in front of Gaziantep Castle was assisted with a “Mehteran” team (Janissary Band Team) and was continued on with characters who interpret Ottoman sultans, Enderuns (students in ottoman palaces), two viziers carrying “The sword” and Janissaries. The marchers that took place in the event enjoyed the great amount of interest from the citizens watching.

The Mehteran Team took place on the stage and showed off their performances with great enthusiasm as they walked over to the Station square where the Ramadan activities and baklava events took place. The Baklava masters were invited to the venue and the Metropolitan Mayor Fatma Şahin and the Gaziantep Governor Ali Yerlikaya joined them on stage for a short speech introducing Gaziantep’s traditions.

The respected Imam Çağdaş Ayıntap, Çelebioğlu, Ömer Güllüoğlu, Kare, Fıstıkzade, Antepsan, Elit, Koçak, and Mahmut Güllüoglu whom are known as the Gaziantep’s baklava masters were invited as the Mehteran Team was continuing with their performances and afterwards near to 10 thousand pieces of Baklava were given out, the approximative numer of the people who attended the program.

What is “Baklava Regiment?”
The tradition of the Baklava Regiment emerged towards the end of the 17th century during the Ottoman Empire period. On the 15th day of Ramadan the sultan was sent to the palace to as the caliph. After visiting the Cardigan-I Sharif in İstanbul he sent baklava to the Janissary and the soldiers. This act turned in to a spectacular ceremony that took place every year and that turned into a tradition. This event was called the “Baklava Alayı”. The people started pouring out to the streets during these events and the soldiers fell in love with the event as well. This tradition ended in 1826 when the Janissary Corps were abolished.

• 02-04.06.2017 Gaziantep chefs participated in Gola Gola Festival in Parma (Italy)
With 7 other UNESCO Creative Cities of Gastronomy, Gaziantep cooperated at the Gola Gola Festival held in Parma to different activities. Parma, host city of the Festival and UCCN City of gastronomy organized for the first time the annual 3-days festival with the UNESCO cities of gastronomy.

During the UNESCO Creative Comparison, Gaziantep chefs collaborated with Östersund (Sweden) chef, proposed a fusion meal with Ale Nazik and Char.

Mehmet ÖZSİMİTCİ, Pastry Chef at Zekerya Usta Katmerci shared his passion for katmer during the UNESCO Dinner organized the second day of the Festival. This dinner was the opportunity for the 8 chefs to share their experiences and traditional knowledge.

For more information: http://en.unesco.org/creative-cities/events/parma-and-7-other-unesco-creatives-cities-gastronomy-combine-their-culinary-know-how-gola

• 06.04.2017. Semiha Yıldırım, wife of the Turkish Prime Minister founded the Cultural Culinary Art Centre (MSM).
Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım’s wife Semiha Yıldırım and the Metropolitan Mayor Fatma Şahin attended the official opening for the Culinary Arts Center.
Semiha Yıldırım and accompanying figures presented the center, and with the help of the Metropolitan Municipality Gaziantep Mayor Fatma Sahin were able to give out further information about the centre.

Towards the end of program the ribbon cutting ceremony took place and the centre was officially in business.

The Culinary Arts Centre
It is mainly aimed that the Culinary Arts Centre will help Gaziantep Cuisine to keep alive and the centre will be able to teach the younger generation about their own cuisine and help them carry the culture for future generations.
All the work that will take place at the centre will be towards to continuing Gaziantep cuisine and hopefully will encourage the people to keep it at the dynamic state it is in.

The work of the culinary arts centre will be a long-lasting program and the work will be carried out on a sustainable and transferable way, spreading the culture to further generations.

Our locals and foreign guests will have a chance to taste, sample and apply the richness and diversity of the Antep Cuisine.

The best food in Gaziantep should be made with the local products and the city has such a culinary culture and richness that Gaziantep cuisine need to be done with local ingredients.

• 12.04.2017 Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality Cultural and Social Affairs Department, which is affiliated to the Mehmet Reşit Göğüş Culinary Arts Education Centre started giving night courses after the request of the locals.
There are many types of people that attend the courses and when the foods are in the process of being made the smell produced from the dishes are inevitable to ignore. These programs have many different people attending and lots of the people attended have very separate work backgrounds.

After the request of the local, it has been decided to create a program divided into 2 different groups. The first group will be held on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. The second group will take place on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

After the educational courses reach to an end the trainees will have learnt the subtleties of Gaziantep cuisine and at the end of the course the participants will have a chance to enter an exam; and will be entitled to a certificate from the Public Education and the Ministry of Education.
For further information about the course program you can contact us from (342 220 55 77)

• 26.04.2017 Gaziantep continues to withhold the UNESCO city title and further proves their qualification to the given award.
In 2015 Gaziantep had entered the Creative Cities Network and had attended with a very rich variety of cuisines that aided them to win first prize of the “Cultural Products Oscar Contest” in 2017. The Cultural Products Oscar Contest was organized by the “Touching Lives Platform”. Mother of Pearl inlay and copper work, Menengiç coffee, Antep Cheese and Pistachio Halva were entered to the competition.

Gaziantep Provincial Culture and Tourism Directorate and Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality participated in the contest. The “Touching Lives Platform” evaluated and looked over the products that are related to the culture and gastronomy in Turkey. The Provincial Directorate of Culture and Tourism participated in the field of culture and art and has participated with the Yemeni, mother of pearl and copper. Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality participated in the competition in the category of cuisines, entering with Halva with peanuts and flower, roasted chickpea infused Halva, Sesame Halva, Peanuts-Walnuts Gummy type of Halva, Menengiç Coffee and Antep Cheese.

During the contest the Yemeni, copper and Mother of Pearl were awarded the Oscar Awards for Turkey; and the Metropolitan Municipality proceeded with becoming the winner of the contest where the Menengiç coffee, Antep Cheese and the Halva that is flourished with Peanuts was placed 1st where there were more than 300 other attendees.

• 30.03.2017 Gaziantep got the Best Practice Award in the scope of UCLG Culture 21 event from among 102 candidates with Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality Culinary Art Centre MUSEM..
Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality is an important member of UCLG (United Cities Local Governments) since 2011. At the General Assembly Meeting held in 2016, the Mayor of Metropolitan Municipality, Mr. Fatma Şahin was elected at the Presidency of UCLG-MEWA (United Cities, Local Governments, Middle East and West Asia) for 2016-2019.
UCLG-MEWA organization is a proactive organization that enables the dissemination of information resources among local governments as well as the creation of sustainability and development plans for the dissemination of production facilities throughout the city in the management of the enterprise and it work as various committees and working groups.
One of these is the UCLG-MEWA Cultural Committee.
The UCLG-MEWA Cultural Committee, as a cultural platform in which its members are involved in the launching and implementation of programs and policies; prioritizes the role of culture in sustainable development. This committee also aims to encourage culture and cultural diversity, which are the main steps of sustainable development in the local implementation and internationalization of "Agenda 21 for Culture" which emphasizes the inseparable relationship between culture, citizenship and sustainable development.
Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality Foreign Affairs Department and MUSEM (Culinary Art Training Centre) prepared a detailed application form in 2016 for the Best Practice Award, which was held within the scope of UCLG Culture 21 activities. MUSEM, which has an important place in the promotion of Gaziantep Food Culture with its successful and sensitive works, was granted an award among the 102 participants and has earned this success to our city. At this point, Gaziantep's unique cuisine has once again proved its name in the international arena. In the framework of this award, Gaziantep Cuisine and MUSEM Model will be introduced with UCLG Journal in more than 100 countries.

• 4.03.2017. Yavuzeli and Araban GASMEK Centres open.

Having a lot of course attendees in centre of Gaziantep, Metropolitan Municipality GASMEK branches have been opened in Yavuzeli and Araban provinces. GASMEK provides services and courses for all segments of the society and in all fields, including gastronomy, field that has met with growing success notably since Gaziantep entered the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.
Having a visit in these centres, Mayor of Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality Ms. Fatma Şahin said that social responsibility projects are important. In these centres lots of people got vocational trainings and then can apply for jobs. She also said that “Municipal works are a part of a team and (…) our team members are very successful. We nominated people who are expert in their field. We are a family and we take action as team spirit.”
Defining municipal services as an “Exam” Ms. Şahin said that "We are trying to protect the rights of 2 million people in the city. Every cent that we spend should be addressed to the people’s benefits. Thank God we have seen that happened so far when we visit people in the street. We work harmoniously with all of our districts that what we can see it today as well." Şahin, who also opened the Dumlupınar Social Facility in Araban, said that the services will be continued in Araban in every ways.

• 25.02.2017. GASMEK has become one of the top ten cooking courses in Turkey.

Gaziantep Art and Vocational Training Course (GASMEK) has become one of the top ten free cooking courses in Turkey.
On the other hand, after Gaziantep becomes a member of UNESCO “Creative Cities Network”, cooking profession and courses attract the citizens more than before.
GASMEK gives more attention to special dishes which are forgotten and these should be transferred to next generations and also GASMEK trains future’s chefs. The trainees, who are keen on the cooking profession, also learn about local and international cuisine.
Trainees, who complete the cooking education given every day, can start to work in various hotels and restaurants with the certificates which they receive.

• 09.02.2016. Little chefs' kitchen adventures

The Metropolitan Municipality M.Reşit Göğüş Culinary Art Training Centre brought together small chefs who wanted to evaluate the semester break with a fun and educational activity.
"I am learning to cook" which is organized for the children to get healthy and delicious eating habits, organized for Gaziantep cuisine to meet at a young age, and the children have had a good time in the kitchen with the activity of Gaziantep Cuisine Workshop.
Children from 8 to 13 years old learnt how to cook Gaziantep special dishes like öcce, omaç, rice  börek, yogurt arab balls, börek soup, dolangel desert.
Besides learning how to cook dishes little chefs also learnt how to communicate, share and cooperate.

• 06.02.2017. Fatma Şahin’s “Now it’s time to go to Gaziantep” Project got good results..

In order to promote Gaziantep’s tourism, Mayor of Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality Şahin started a campaign with the slogan “Now it’s time to go to Gaziantep”. After the campaign started more tourist groups who come to southeast visit Gaziantep’s historical and touristic places.
The national and local tourists coming to Gaziantep try to eat city’s famous dishes after Gaziantep became a member of UNESCO creative cities network. After well deserved meals, tourists can also visit Zeugma Museum which is hosting "Gypsy Girl" and exhibited the mosaic from the ancient city of Zeugma.
Ufuk Çoban who starts a tour from İstanbul to Southeast with 8 other people, says that they had a pleasant time in Gaziantep and surrounding cities.

• 12.12.2016.

Hosted by Izmir Metropolitan Municipality, the 2nd International Gastronomy Tourism Congress started simultaneously with 10th Travel Turkey Izmir 2016 Fair. Congress was realized with the cooperation of İZFAŞ, TÜRSAB, Izmir Economy University and also with the contribution of “Reseau Délice World Gourmet Cities Association” and Izmir Cookers Association.
At the opening ceremony, President of Tursab Başaran Ulusoy gave a plaque to Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality due to the contribution of Municipality by providing sponsorship to the Congress. Assistant Secretary General Fikret Tural who attended the ceremony also presented baklava prepared in the form of Turkish National Flag.
The congress brought together the world's leading gastronomic and tourism experts and educators. In the Congress, the steps that can be taken for gastronomy as an alternative tourism destination have been evaluated by experts including the coordinator of the UCCN gastronomy sub-group, Dag Hartman who was one of the panellists. During the Congress, famous chefs performed special shows and presentations during the workshops.
Gaziantep’s success story to be the first city in Turkey to join UNESCO Creative Cities Network Gastronomy was the topic of the first presentation in the panel by Namık Kemal Döleneken. In addition, besides Gaziantep’s baklava and peanuts, activities and local dishes will be presented in the stand established by MUSEM, which serves in the congress hall under the Presidency of the Department of Culture and Social Affairs.

• 15.11.2016

Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality is going to open a special “pastry” for celiac disease patients. Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality realized the Project called “Producing Hands” in order to help the celiac disease patients by providing them special food so that they will not have to carry their own food wherever they go because of the fact that Turkey is mostly limited to corn and flour, have narrow market and limited products.
In cooperation with the Metropolitan Municipality and the Governorship of Gaziantep, all disabled groups were trained in the scope of the Producing Hands Project, which was passed down through the Social Support Program (SODES).
Within the scope of the course given at the Municipality's Active Life and Education Center, a class was created from disabled people whose 40 percent and above are eligible to work.
The trainees were trained in bakery products for 8 months. Those who have successfully completed the course will receive a Certificate approved by the Ministry of Education.
Successful and job seeking disabled trainees will begin to produce gluten-free products for celiac patients at the "Producing Hands Pastry" which will be established at the end of the project.
Products such as sandwich bread, cookies, desserts and pastry varieties for celiac patients will be made in the pastry.

• 17.08.2016: The first harvest of “green gold Antep pistachio” has been done with the participation of the Mayor of Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality Mrs Fatma Şahin.

Mrs Şahin has picked up pistachio from trees centenaries (800 and 1000 years old) in Tokaçlı village in Yavuzeli district and wished that the first harvest would be fruitful.
Mrs Şahin has underlined the importance of developing the pistachio which is the flavour of Gaziantep’s cuisine in every aspect by harnessing the fertility of the soil and its heavy reliance to the industry.
Mrs Şahin indicated that the Pistachio Festival will be held on end of September.

• Pistachio Museum Coming.

Mrs Şahin indicated that growing crops of pistachio will be increased and its publicity will proceed. She also pointed out the importance of its technological infrastructure and its market and said that a museum will be built to from the studies that were done about the pistachio at the “Pistachio Park”.

• Mid August-Mid September: Children and Young learning Gaziantep’s Cuisine.

Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality Culinary Art Training Centre organized courses to children and the youth to familiarize with the Gaziantep’s Culinary.
The course programs will start at second of August and will be continuing at Tuesday and Thursday at the Culinary Art Training Centre and it will host the young trainees for one month. 16 children between the age of 10-14 and 15 youth between the ages of 14-16 attended to the courses were prepared to hand down Gaziantep’s culinary culture to the next generation.

• 28-29.05.2016: Bulgur Festival.

For the first time in Turkey, bulgur was promoted in Gaziantep with a great festival. Bulgur is a strategic product as protein and vitamins and it is believed that bulgur is a cure of obesity disease. The designation of Gaziantep as UNESCO Creative City of gastronomy last year brought many innovations and opportunities to the city to improve its assets and enlarge its inter-cultural exchanges with other countries and cities in the world. Among the events, there were presentation about bulgur dishes by famous chef Yunus Emre Akkor from Gaziantep and “101 Bulgur Dish Exhibition”. A panel was held as bulgur rising value of marketing in the world with the participation of world-wide recognized chefs. It is mentioned that bulgur is ceased form a traditional dish and thanks to Gaziantep bulgur is expressed as an important part of world's cuisine.

• 28.05.2016 a Cooking competition

The 28.05.2016 a Cooking competition was held in Acarobası village, Saliha-Cemil Cahit Güzelbey Secondary School under TUBİTAK Science Fair. Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality started the events with shows of Folklore team and it continued with the visit of his students' inventions. After that, the contestants were asked to prepare stuffed vine leaves with rice and diced cucumber garlic and mint in yoghurt. Contestants participated this contest from 7 different villages situated in Gaziantep’s region.

• 16.05.2016

In 2015, a memorandum of understanding was signed between Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality and the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs in order to enlarge the actions of the Pistachio Research Institute. On the 55.000 m2 that will count the park, 30.000 m2 are going to be allowed to the Research Institute (to enlarge its researches on pistachios, almonds, fruit trees, etc) and 25.000 are going to be dedicated to a park, a museum, cafes, etc.

• 02.05.2016:

In the framework of the Civic Involvement Project, Gaziantep University and Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality organized a Young Chefs Cooking Competition Activity focused on the traditional dishes of Gaziantep. Expert young chefs from 11 different Turkish cities, students in touristic sector, cooking schools and culinary schools participated side by side with some citizens of Gaziantep. The concept of the contest was to give to all the opportunity to meet up with people from different social level and ages (for instance, a 80 years old grandmother competed with her grandson of 18 years old). A total of 97 chefs were present.

• Gaziantep Cuisine was introduced in Canada. 25.04.2016

Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality participated to the 10th edition of Terroir Symposium, held in Toronto.

During this symposium, attended by many chefs and food writer from all over the world, degustation and discovery of new taste are organized. On this occasion, Gaziantep Cuisine was one of the main attractions.
During this very busy symposium, Gaziantep Cuisine and its innovative capacities were presented through various seminars as well as detailed information given by experienced cooks.
At the end of the Symposium, a reception was held at one of the most important art galleries of Canada, the Art Gallery of Ontario, where guests have tasted some Gaziantep Food. Gaziantep Food has been highly appreciated by the few 600 chefs and food writers present at the reception.



• Food writers are at MUSEM, 18.04.2016.

In April 18th, Gaziantep Culinary Art Training Centre (MUSEM) entertained Food and Travel editors from U.K.
The participants were “Essentialjourneys.co.uk” editor Michael Anthony COWTON1; Hugh Alexander COLLİNS from “Bradt Travel Guides” 2 (www.bradtguides.com); the owner and editor of “itsrudetostare.com” Melissa Marie HALES3; Jack Nathaniel PEAT , travel and food writer of “thelondoneconomic.com” 4; Amy Catherine QUİCK from “Olive Magazine”5; Clarissa HYMAN, food and travel writer, owner of “Zesterdaily.com6; and Aynur TATTERSALL, DHA Doğan News Agency Correspondent in London .
Editors made fried pastries with rice and minced meat filling before enjoying some of the best dishes of Gaziantep Cuisine.

1 With more than 40 visitors a month
2 28.000 followers
3 12.000 followers
4 With more than 250.000 visitors a month and 41.640 followers
5 60.275 circulations
6 13.825 followers

• Gaziantep Cuisine in Sicilia. March 2016.

Gaziantep cuisine was in Sicilia during March 2016. In the framework of the 10 weeks program “Cook the Farm” organized by Anna Tasca Lanza Cooking School, the last week on the training was dedicated to the Turkish Kitchen. During one week, from “dry stuffed vegetables” to baklavas, Gaziantep’s cuisine was introduced in many ways. The workshops, organized by Gamze İneceli were animated by the chef Tangör Tan and the Culinary writer Ümit Hamlacıbaşı; the author of “Gaziantep Cookery: A Taste of Sun and Fire” Aylin Öney Tan presented speeches on spring meals made from yogurt or dried vegetables; from “shira” to baklavas. With the support of Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality, who provided the material for the courses (food and equipment), this last training week was the most colourful one. At the end of the courses, the dishes which have been made during the “Turkish week”, has been presented to all.

• We will introduce Gaziantep’s mosaic and its gastronomy with tourim guides (19.03.2016)

As a result of the entry of Gaziantep in UNESCO "Creative Cities Network", the city decided to held its second "Tourism Guide Gourmet and Gastronomy Specialist Seminar". This seminar was organized by Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality and Gaziantep Chamber of Guide in order to represent and introduce our city's cuisine in the world.
The seminar was held in Culinary Arts Training Center (MUSEUM). Researcher- Author Gonca TOKUZ and Gourmet writer Ragıp GÜZELBEY shared their knowledge and experience theoretically and practically. The guides watched some selected examples from Gaziantep cuisine, after that they shared their experiences participating in the production process.
The seminar began with the promotion of "Gaziantep Cuisine" which is the unique cuisine mentioned with a city name. Professional guides and academics from Gaziantep Chamber of Guides Directorate of Board, Istanbul, Aydın, Kuşadası, İzmir Ankara, Eskişehir, Nevşehir, Şanlıurfa and Antakya joined this seminar.
Mayor of Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality, Ms. Fatma ŞAHİN visited the course.

• The hope of celiac patients, Famous Chef Sülayman Engin will provide training to professional chefs for celiac disease. (15.03.2016)

The first and only gluten-free professional chef training which will be implemented in MUSEM, will start tomorrow for one and half million celiac patients in Turkey. The applied trainings will take 2 days for each group. All the details associated with feeding procedure of celiac disease and cooking gluten-free meals will be transferred to you esteemed chef.  Gluten-free chef program is the first Gluten-free educational qualification applied for celiac patients in Turkey. 

• Gaziantep Cuisine, which is under protection of UNESCO, started to strengthen its infrastructure with education. (January 2016)

In this frame, Gaziantep Gastronomy and Tourism Association (GASTURDER) signed a binary protocol with Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality. The Association began "Education for Sustainable Professional Gastronomy" for the stuff members who are serving in the sector.

• Gaziantep received the European Commission EDEN Award on “Local Tourism and gastronomy”, 23.11.2015

This project, launched in 2007 by the European Commission and promoting sustainable tourism development models across the European Union, is based on national competitions that take place every year and result in the selection of a tourist “destination of excellence” for each participating country.

This year’s theme was focusing on “Local Tourism and gastronomy”. Due to its commitment on sustainable development in the domain of culture, environment and the excellence of its gastronomy and gastronomic tourism, Gaziantep won the national award for Turkey.

This prize will allow Gaziantep to enhance its visibilty as an emerging European destinations, to create a platform for sharing good practices across Europe and promotes networking with the other awarded destinations
The prize’s ceremony will be held at the Council of the European Union in Brussels (Belgium) in December 16-17th.

For more information:
http://disiliskiler.kultur.gov.tr/TR,148662/avrupali-seckin-destinasyonlar-projesi-eden-2015-yili-u-.html

• Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality Culinary Arts Training Center held the fourth Inter-High School Regional Cooking Contest, Nov. 2015

In the previous competition, the menu was “Doğrama” and “Bulgur Pilaf”, and this time the menu of the contest was “Kabaklama” and “Bulgur Pilaf”.
2 students and 1 teacher from each school participated to cooking contest. The competition was held on 11.9.2015, various gifts were given to the schools.
Under the presidency of MUSEM Training Coordinator; Doğa Çitçi, Gourmet Author Sermin Ocak, Özden Özsabuncuoğlu and Chef Kerem Özatay were in the Contest Jury.
Many delicious dishes from each other have been given points by jury who had a hard time while taking decision. Jury members congratulated the participants of the contest.

• Seminar for tourist guides in Gaziantep on gourmet and gastronomical expertises, Nov. 2015

Within the cooperation of Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality and Gaziantep Chamber of Tourist Guides, “ Seminar for Tourist Guides on Gourmet and Gastronomical Expertise” was carried into practise, including other cities in the region. For this seminar including; Gaziantep, Hatay, Kilis, Kahramanmaraş and Malatya, 42 professional tourist guides from chambers of tourist guides of Gaziantep, İstanbul, İzmir, Çanakkale, Trabzon, Antalya, Nevşehir, Aydın and Hatay have just been in Gaziantep between the dates of 13-15 November 2015. Began with the presentation of Gaziantep Cuisine, a unique cuisine in the entire world that is named after the city, MUSEM was selected as the excercising kitchen during the seminar. The tourist guides have both watched special cooking ways of selected plates of Gaziantep and have experienced how to apply them on their own.

• MUSEM’s activities held during the last months. (please, find some pictures in “Gallery”)

NOVEMBER 2015
One team including Officer Ahmet Yakup ERKILIÇ in Culture and Tourism Ministry, Elif Bilge Çetin (Coordinator) ve Kamil Gökhan Nebioğlu ( (Culture and Tourism Expert) have visited our Training Center in the scope of theme called " "Tourism and Local Gastronomy" in EDEN Project. This team have observed some activities which are given our institution during the courses. When they visited our center, we have offered them a menu including « öz soup », « doğrama », lamb swet with quince, rice, rice patty, « sini meatballs » and saffron and rice dessert.

OCTOBER 2015
One team including Officer Ahmet Yakup ERKILIÇ in Culture and Tourism Ministry, Elif Bilge Çetin (Coordinator) ve Kamil Gökhan Nebioğlu ( (Culture and Tourism Expert) have visited our Training Center in the scope of theme called " "Tourism and Local Gastronomy" in EDEN Project. This team have observed some activities which are given our institution during the courses. When they visited our center, we have offered them a menu including « öz soup », « doğrama », lamb swet with quince, rice, rice patty, « sini meatballs » and saffron and rice dessert.
Chinese visited Southeast and East Anatolia Info Group
Within the framework of 3rd Medicine Student Symposium, « Döğmeli Alaca soup », small meatballs with yogurt, rice patty, season salad and hummus have been prepared for the people who are coming from outside of the city.
In « Gaziantep Presentation Days » which was held by Yunus Emre Culture Centre in Budapest (Hungary) "Malhıtalı Meatballs" and "sheet of mulberry pulp dried under sun" have been served for 250 people.
"Star TV Ezgi Sertel ile Lezzet Haritası Program" shooting was held. Yuvarlama, rice patty, Zucchini, Farina-Halva, « Döğmeli Alaca soup » have been prepared for the program.
Inter-high school cooking competition « For Awareness of our Culinary Heritage"
Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality held first European Heritage Days in 2014. The theme of this project is "Heritage and Awareness" for 2015. Within the scope of this activity, this year inter-high school cooking competition and conversation about local food in order to raise awareness about Gaziantep kitchen. The first competition was held among the vocational schools for girls. Competition menu was including doğrama and Bulgur pilaf. Gourmet and Food Books Authors Ragip GÜZELBEY, Hüseyin ALTINEL, Sermin OCAK, Oya ÖZKANLI and Özden ÖZSABUNCUOĞLU were in the jury members. They have tasted these unforgettable and tasty dishes and they evaluated the presentation of the dishes. Participating schools have got some presents such as mini fridge, water dispenser, coffee maker, kettle and walkie-talkie. Besides the presents, all participant students have got a cooking book called "The Taste of Sun and Fire" and a certificate of participation.
Within the scope of « World Food Waste Prevention Week », the “Prevention of Food Waste Activity » has been organized two sections in a day. In our event, in order to evaluate the remaining bread, some dishes such as; « Omaç », « Çullupapa », « Altı Tiritli Kebap », « Öcce », « Vişne Tiridi » have been cooked.
For the first grade students in Nizip Alkan Vocational and Technical High School have been got an education about within the scope of "Inter-High School Regional Cooking Competition 2015 European Heritage Days" event. This education was given by Assistant Professor Mr. Ceyhun UÇUK form Gaziantep University Gastronomy Department.

SEPTEMBER 2015
Winter Preparation Canned Making Workshop and Pickles/Jam Making Workshop was held. In these workshops, canned beans, canned roasted eggplant, canned eggplant moussaka and canned tomatoes have been prepared; as well as sun dried figs jam, peach jam, hot pepper pickle in tomatoes sauce. The participant students who attended our events have got small canned packages (canned eggplant and beans) and pickles with tomatoes and peach jam as a gift.
“MUSEM Train the trainers Applied Gaziantep Cuisine Course” began with 12 participants.

AUGUST 2015
North Cyprus Youth TV “Osdoyuro Lezzet” Program shooting team came to Gaziantep and shot a film on “yuvarlama”, stuffed zucchini with bulgur wheat and “dolangel”.
“Creative Hands Workshop” (10-14 years) have been held. On the menu: “Omaç”, “Kalem Böreği”, “Şeker Hamurlu Kurabiye Süsleme” ve “Cup cake”.
In the framework of “Kirazlık Children's Academy”, pizza, “Lady bug canapé”, ornaments of sugar paste cookies have been made with the 5-6 years old children.
"I have an Invitation Workshop" was held. In our workshop “öz soup”, “taraklık tava”, “su böreği”, eggplant salad, “muhammara”, “dolangel”.
Gaziantep University Turkish Education Application and Research Centre and the Yunus Emre Institute students have visited the Culinary Arts Education Centre. Workshop was held and students learnt how to cook the sheet of mulberry pulp dried under sun (bastık) and vegetable patty. Menu: the sheet of mulberry pulp dried under sun and vegetable patty.

JULY 2015
A promotional film was shot about the preparation and presentation of Gaziantep special dishes; such as “yuvarlama”, “allı yeşilli dolma”, stuffed meatballs, “zerde rice pudding”, purslane dish, sour little meatballs.
5th Traditional “Bayram” Preparation Workshop was held. With our chefs, we cooked essential Gaziantep dishes for “bayram feast”. These are Antep cookie, “Köy Kahkesi”, “zerde rice pudding”. After all the work, participants were given a certificate of attendance. 75 people were reached in 5 different groups.
Japanese researcher Shinya Okazaki, his wife Yoko and his research team made shots for dishes. Menu: Yuvarlama, Stuffed zucchini with bulgur wheat.

• ASSOCİATİON FOR GASTRONOMY AND TOURİSM (GASTURDER). 10.08.2015

Gaziantep Gastronomy and Tourism Association (known as GASTURDER) was established on 10.08.2015. As a legal entity Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality is among the founding members. GASTURDER was established in order to enable and enhance civil society activities; in this regard, support to people and organizations who work on this issue, to contribute into increasing the awareness, dissemination and marketing of "Gaziantep Dishes" in national and international level. Because Gaziantep Dishes are the most important cultural heritage from Gaziantep City.

Awards have been presented to people coming from different cities of Turkey, serving in Anatolia, people have become representatives of their local and kitchen, institutions and organizations in seven different categories. One of this category called "On the Way of Identified Cities" award was given to Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality Emine Göğüş Culinary Museum. On the other hand, in the category of "Research / Review / Book", Tahir Tekin Öztan has also took place in one of the award winning name with his Gourmet City Gaziantep Cuisine study.

• Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality Emine Göğüş Culinary Museum has got "On the Way of Identified Cities" in scope of Ateşbaz-ı Veli Culinary Culture Prize. 24.10.2015

The winners were given awards in seven categories of Ateşbaz-ı Veli Kitchen and Culinary Culture Prize which was organized by the Governor of Konya, Konya Metropolitan Municipality, Meram Municipality, Selcuk University and Association of Anatolian Folk Cuisine. Konya Lieutenant Governer Fahri Oluk, Gendarmerie Regional Commander Brigadier Timurcan Ermiş, Selçuk University Rector Prof. Dr. Hakkı Gökbel, Ayşe Çalık Sister of Prime Minister Prof. Dr. Ahmet Davutoğlu, Meram Mayor Fatma Toru, Konya Metropolitan Municipality Deputy Mayor Mehmet Çalık, Konya Provincial Culture and Tourism Director Asst. Assoc. Dr. Mustafa Çıpan, 22nd generation descendant of Mevlana, Vice President of International Mevlana Foundation Esin Çelebi Bayru, Anatolian Folk Cuisine Association President Adnan Şahin, well-known domestic and international chefs and other supporting organizations and institutions have participated in the ceremony which was held in Dedeman Hotel, Konya.

Awards have been presented to people coming from different cities of Turkey, serving in Anatolia, people have become representatives of their local and kitchen, institutions and organizations in seven different categories. One of this category called "On the Way of Identified Cities" award was given to Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality Emine Göğüş Culinary Museum. On the other hand, in the category of "Research / Review / Book", Tahir Tekin Öztan has also took place in one of the award winning name with his Gourmet City Gaziantep Cuisine study.


• Unilever Food Solutions Chefs in GASMEK

Unilever Food Solutions Chefs shared their experience with Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality Art and Vocational Training Course culinary school instructors and chefs (GAMEK).

GAMEK Culinary School instructors, chefs and Unilever Food Solutions chefs participated in the activity which held in GAMEK in Hakan Özcan Youth and Culture Centre.

The chiefs of Unilever Food Solutions which is the leading company in non-home food sector, entered into the kitchen of GAMEK culinary school and they shared their experiences with GAMEK Culinary School Instructors and chefs by preparing some dishes.

In order to support the development of the non-home food sector Unilever Food Solutions continues its activities. The chefs of this association shared their information practically by preparing dishes with non-home food products.

Ramazan Dündar, General Coordinator of GAMEK, said that Culinary School has cooperation with Unilever Food Solutions in order to be open the developments in the world. He also said that "our trainees learn how to prepare the dishes with our experienced master chefs. In addition to that the trainees are also informed general kitchen rules, usage of equipments and hygiene. In order to give a better education to our trainees receiving theoretical and practical training and to improve our instructors' background information; we provide an adaptation for our chefs in a best way by organizing various events".

• İnternational Workshop

The 1st National workshop on gastronomy for University and students was organized by the University of Gaziantep last year (December 11-12th 2014), with the Beaux Arts Faculty, Department of Gastronomy and Culinary Arts. This programme was bringing together students in Gastronomy from Turkey and Cyprus and was the opportunity for them to exchange their experimentations and their expectations on their teaching and the possibility for them to improve their skills in that domain. Professors and academicians were also invited to give their point of view on the topic and oriented the students.

• HORECA Festival

On 2015 April 27th, students of the Culinary Arts section of the University of Gaziantep and the students of the Hotel Management Professional High School participated to the 4th stage of the HORECA Itinerant Gastronomic Festival organized by the firm METRO. They were able on this occasion to meet professionals of hotel and gastronomic sectors as well as take advantage of a particular course led by Volkan Karataş, member of the Bocuse d’Or. Its creations were prepared and tasted as well as local specialities.

• Dede Korkut And Gaziantep Cultural Evening in UNESCO, Paris,2015

Last March, the Cultural Departement of Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality was participating and organizing in collaboration with the International Turkic Academy, a cultural evening at the UNESCO Headquarters in Paris. This event was dedicated to the celebration of the 70th anniversary of UNESCO and the 200th anniversary of first printed version of the "Book of Dede Korkut", the Turkic epic story.

This event presented under the title of “Korkut's Legacy and the Turkic World” and organized through a concert combining music and literature included participation of artists from Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Russian Federation.

After the concert, a reception was organized by the Metropolitan Municipality of Gaziantep. Nearly 1,000 people have discovered more than 30 dishes and desserts, typical of Gaziantep regional cuisine. The evening was also an opportunity for the city of Gaziantep to promote its history and touristic places. This discovery evening also included a traditional instrumental music concert given by local artists.

• Gaziantep Traditional Breakfast in Budapest


The restaurant "Rudas Baths" with its breathtaking view on Budapest organized with the Turkish Cultural Centre Yunus Emre Institute, a Turkish breakfast on a large scale for nearly 80 people. In addition to these 80 people were also present significant members of Hungarian medias. The breakfast menu with the specific Gaziantep flavors was expertly prepared by chef Attila Nuray. The breakfast was accompanied by some traditional turkish music, performed by the hungarian musician Zsolt Biro and a folk singer; a moment of pleasure, uniting two very important notions for turkish people: gastronomy and music.


• Matsuri Gaziantep, May 27 – June 5, 2010

In order to celebrate 120th Turkey and Japan friendship, 2010 Japan Year declared in our country as "Matsuri 2010" was held in Gaziantep for 10 days. By following the route of Silk Road, this festival aims to introduce Japanese culture to the cities and only Istanbul, Bursa and Gaziantep from Turkey were awarded to host in different season.
In the scope of "Matsuri-2010", which is the traditional festival in Japan, was presented to the audience and visitors with many activities. Kimono, silk printing pictures, Japan photo exhibition, ikebana performance, koto concert, traditional Japanese food culture, the similarities and differences between the two cultures are some activities done successfully by Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality and the opening ceremony of the festival was held historical place called "Bayazhan".

All the items of Japanese culture come together at the opening night, Traditional Koto Group presented a concert. With Japanese motifs, guests were served "sushi" the indispensable flavor in Japanese cuisine and Japanese sushi masters gave some information to the guest about how to cook sushi.

Traditional Japanese festival car "Yamahako" was exhibited in Kırkayak Park and the famous artist Günseli Kato demonstrated a special show.

Note: In Japan, "Matsuri" word has a very important place in Japanese society and it is used for traditional festivals. These festivals are similar to those celebrations called Hıdrellez in our society.

• 7. Silk Road Mayors Forum in Gaziantep, 2012

7th Silk Road Mayors Forum was hosted by Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality on 9-11 November 2012. This forum was held with the participation of Family and Social Policies Minister Fatma Şahin (today the mayor of Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality) and Mayor of İstanbul Metropolitan Municipality, President of United Cities and Local Goverments (UCLG)and Turkey Union of Municipalities(TBB) Kadir Topbaş. 120 foreign guests from 30 countries were at the opening ceremony, Family and Social Policies Minister Fatma Şahin said "Evliya Çelebi told that Gaziantep is the apple of world's eye and welcome to Gaziantep. I would like to send greetings on behalf of my city and my people to the whole countries and cities on the Silk Road. This city was a strong city in the past with its history and civilization. It will continue to be stronger city with the next targets." Gaziantep Governor Erdal Ata, Mayor of İstanbul Metropolitan Municipality Kadir Topbaş and Mayor of Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality gave a speech and referred to the same subjects.

• Asian Mayors Forum in Gaziantep, 2013

Asian Mayors Forum (AMF) 3rd Executive Committe meeting began in Gaziantep. AMF President and Representative Bangkok Governor Vallop Suwanee said that this forum was created by the asian mayors who share their experience and knowledge. The meeting was held in Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality City Council Hall and AMF President Vallop Suwanee, Mayor of Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality, Mayor of Antakya, Mayor of Kilis, Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality Deputy Secretary General, AMF Secretary General and the representatives from China, India, Iran, Korea, Jerusalem, Sri Lanka, Lebanon, Thailand and Turkey attended to the forum.

• 450 different kind of Gaziantep Food will be introduced to the world, March 2015

GAZIANTEP Gastronomy and Chefs Association President Battal Yildirim said that they will make some efforts to promote 450 different kinds of Gaziantep dishes to Turkey and world cuisine.
GAZIANTEP Gastronomy and Chefs Association President Battal Yildirim said that city has a rich variety of culinary culture. He also said that there are 450 kinds of dishes in Gaziantep cuisine and the food culture of the city will be introduced to the world with the projects. He also stated that there are some dishes in Gaziantep cuisine left from BC. Mr. Yıldırım also said;
"There are hundreds of dishes in Gaziantep kitchen. We'll do our best to promote these dishes to the world and Turkey. There are some dishes left from BC in Gaziantep cuisine culture. It is the fact that the reason why the food diversity is so much in Gaziantep that the city is located on the Silk Road and this land has hosted various civilizations."