Khinkali are one of the favourite Georgian foods and they are fairly easy to make. Although similar to the Chinese dumplings, khinkali are shaped in a circle with radiating folds from the centre. This is meant to represent the sun, which is a symbol in Georgia. I’ve enjoyed eating khinkali many times and cooking them a couple of times. While in Tbilisi, I took a cooking course with Irina at Chakandrila and I took note of her recipe for khinkali. They were delicious and very juicy!
200 ml cold water
300g wheat flour
1/2 tsp salt
200g minced beef
100g minced pork pork
1 medium onion, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
Handful of fresh parsley, finely chopped
Handful of fresh coriander, finely chopped
Freshly ground black pepper for topping
First, prepare the meat filling by mixing the minced meats, onion, garlic and herbs. Season with salt and pepper. Finally, add in a little bit of water at a time. Mix it into the meat mixture until it is absorbed. When the water can no longer be absorbed and there is some liquid in the bowl, then it is ready. This liquid will make the dumpling filling soupy.
Next, in a large mixing bowl, prepare the dough by mixing the water, flour and salt. Knead it until it no longer feels sticky. Then roll the dough out to 3-4 mm, and cut circles about 6cm in diametre with a glass. Roll each circle out more until the dough is 1.5 mm thick.
Put a large tablespoon of meat mixture in the centre of each circle. Pinch and fold around it in a circle, so that the dough overlaps and leaves a smaller opening. Finally, pinch together in the middle to form a little stem, and to close the khinkali. If juice leaks out, then dip in flour to dry it out. Set aside on a plate.
In a large pot, bring water to boil and add a teaspoon of salt. Swirl the water as you add them so they don’t stick. Then let the khinkali boil until they rise. For meat filling, cook 5-6 minutes longer after they rise. For potato or cheese cook for 4 minutes.
When they’re done and the dough looks shiny, turn off the heat. Quickly pour cold water on the top and then remove them to a plate
Grind fresh black pepper on top for serving. The traditional way to eat khinkali is with fingers by holding the stem of the dough. I like this because then I can leave the doughy stems and it is easy to eat the tasty part!
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