Traditional Georgian Foods

26 Nov, 2018 - 06:20


For ages, Georgian dishes have been impressed by Mediterranean, Arabic, Iranian, Ottoman, and the north part of India. Nowadays, Georgian cuisine can be considered as a bridge between the Middle East taste and the Mediterranean’s!

Georgia is the intersection between the East and the West that is why it has been influenced by different monarchies and cultures! As one of the first community for Christianity, this country has experienced lots of challenges, clashes and combats, the reflection of which can be tasted in its flavoursome foods! For instance, during the establishment of peace according to which merchants could import various products and spices through Silk Road, welcoming spices and new techniques, Georgians combined abroad spices to create foods based on their own taste and style. You can see high value of Georgian food culture in “Supra” meaning “table” which lasts for hours. In this paper you will get familiar with some of the most important Gerogian foods!

1-Khinkali

Khinkali is a popular donut inside which different substances can be put. In mountain areas, this mouth-watering food, abundantly there, is made of lamb. However, in other areas, to make Khinkali, chopped beef is used. No one certainly knows about the origin of the food! Some believe that this food entered into Georgia by Tatars while others claim that Khinkali is an ancient component of food culture of the mountain areas of Georgia!

2- Khachapuri

A Georgian banquet would not be completed unless “Khachapuri” exists! Kjachapuri can be introduced as a traditional Georgian bread and cheese with a luscious taste! The shape and texture of the food is made differently from one region to another. It can be thick or thin, one or multi-layered, circle, triangle, or square shaped and in different size. For instance, “Khachapuri” rooted in “Adjara,” a coastal area in the margin of the Black Sea in Georgia, is made in the form of a boat inside which egg is added.

3- Mtsvadi

“Mtsvadi” is a skewer of lamb or calf kebab which is seen as the very symbol of banquet in Georgia! In different regions as well as seasons, the selected meat for Mtsvadi is different though the way of making it is more or less the same. After grilling, the meat is put inside the combination of thin layers of onion and pomegranate juice and mixes with them. The hot meat makes onions a bit Caramelized and in combination with the meat, pomegranate juice takes the form of a somewhat acidic sauce.

4- Georgian Cheese

Georgians are huge fans of their cheese! Every strict has its own type of cheese. “Sulguni” cheese, belonging to the west part of Georgia, is considered as the most popular semi-soft Georgian cheese. This type of cheese with its high humidity feels like Mozzarella. Characterized by its kind of chilly taste, “Gouda” is a mountain cheese produced traditionally out of sheep milk in sheath and found originally in “Tusheti.”

5- Mushroom Stew

In Georgian menus you can see a long list of slow cooking meat stews such as “Kharcho” or “Chaqapuli.” In line with meat stews, different varieties of vegetable stews have as well been provided which are popular especially during Christians Fasting named “Lent.” Mushroom Stew is generally made with “Khis Soko” mushrooms growing on tree trunks. This stew is served in pottery bowls. Khis Soko has a kind of spicy and forest scent and tough texture. It cannot be provided with slow cooking.

6. Kharcho with Ghomi

Made with slow cooking, “Kharch” is a meat stew with tomato, spices and aromatic! The unique flavor of this dish is mostly due to “Khmeli Suneli” which is seen as the Georgian counterpart of the Indian curry and extracted from evergreen flower. “Ghomi” is the main dish of the “Samegrelo” region in the west part of Georgia. The good flavor of the food is rooted in the barren soil of the region. To make Ghomi, “Megrel” nation substituted corn with their local product millet.

7. Chakapuli

In comparison with Kharcho, “Chakapuli” seems a lighter and more delicate stew accompanied with scent of spring flowers, fruits and “tkemali” sauce! Tkemali sauce is an international flavor made out of jungle plums and fragrant flowers. Many believe that Chakapuli is analogous to the Iranian dish “Ghormeh sabzi” though its flavor is particular to Georgia!

8. Pkhali

“Pkhali” is a cold vegetarian appetizer and popular tapas in Georgia. It is made of ground walnuts with abundant spices, aromatic plants with vinegar which later will be boiled or fried. Frequently, it is garnished with pomegranate seeds which add a blunt sour, fruity and acidic taste to it!

9. Pickled Jonjoli

Georgians are highly interested in pickling vegetables like cucumber, zucchini, (un)ripe tomato, leek and garlic. Pickled “Jonjoli” flowers can be regarded as the most unknown Georgian pickle! Long shoots of this plant grow and blossom in medium sized bushes. Generally, in May, before blossoming, Jonjoli plants are harvested and pickled.

10. Ricotta Cornet

Trying horny rolls of “Ricotta Cornet,” you will taste the amalgam of various dairy products all accumulated in a tasty snack! Mixed with peppermint, Ricotta cheese is wrapped in thin sheets of sulguni cheese so that the salty and tasty snack with the flavor of peppermint will be ready for you!

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