Georgian food is arguably one of the world’s most underrated cuisines, featuring flavors from the Mediterranean world as well as Arab, Mongol flavors, Persian and Ottoman kitchens. Check 9 of the best Georgian appetizers work for any crowd or occasion and find the perfect match for your gathering.
- Fried eggplant Rolls with Walnuts, Spices and Herb Filling (Badrijani Nigvzit) — a perfect make-ahead appetizer and a great idea for party finger food.
- Spinach spread or dip with walnuts and cilantro (Ispanakhis Pkhali)
Ispanakhis Pkhali is a cold vegetarian appetizer, popular Georgian tapas. A mélange of spice-rich walnut paste, fresh herbs and vinegar are added to vegetables, fried or boiled. Pkhali is often garnished with pomegranate seeds, which enhances the mild acidity with a sour, fruity finish.
- Red Pkhali — cook beets with walnut-garlic dressing
Red Pkhali is a Georgian vegetable dish — made with beetroots. The main ingredient which makes Pkhali so piquant is walnut-garlic dressing. People love to eat it with Shoti bread. Sometimes people serve Pkhali trio (Eggplant, spinach and beet with ground walnuts, fresh herbs & Georgian spices) formed as individual pieces arranged on a platter, or in a more rustic way — just in a shallow bowl called GOBI.
Jonjoli with onion and Kakhetian sunflower oil
Jonjoli is one of the Georgian appetizers– a medium-sized bush producing long-stemmed flowers, which are harvested just before they flower in May and consumed throughout the year. Jonjoli is consumed in various ways, sometimes it’s mixed with sunflower oil or with other pickled vegetables such as cucumber, pepper or tomatoes. The appetizer goes well with Georgian bean soup as well as with boiled potatoes or simply with Georgian cornbread — Mchadi.
- Mchadi — Georgian cornbread
Georgian cornbread Mchadi is very popular throughout Georgia, yet every region of the country has its own version of Mchadi. In some provinces, they prefer thicker and wetter Mchadi, while in other parts of the country locals prepare more oily and crispy cornbread.
- Rolled Nadughi in the thin leaves of Sulguni cheese
One of the most outstanding appetizers is — Nadughi. It is soft cottage cheese, similar to Italian ricotta cheese. Usually, it is served rolled in the thin leaves of Sulguni (mild, elastic cheese with layers, similar to Italian mozzarella). Nadughi is served with some pomegranates and mint.
- Mtsvane Lobio
Green beans, cooked with white onions, fresh tomatoes & herbs (poached organic egg optional)
- Beetroot salad with tkemali
Beetroot salad with Georgian wild, sour plum sauce tkemali is a healthy option filled with essential nutrients and vitamins.
an Alpine leek, which can be found in early spring. The plant is widespread in the Caucasus region. Folks mainly eat it boiled or pickle with garlic, walnuts and olive oil.
Author: Natia Pashurishvili