Abkhazian Dishes

Abkhazian Dishes

Abkhazia (Abkhazeti) is an integral part of Georgia in the northwest part of the country, on the coast of the Black Sea, which is temporarily occupied by Russia. Traditions, folklore, gastronomy, and the history of co-existence, indicate that Georgians and Abkhazians have the same roots, and naturally, this reflects in the culinary scene.

Ajika and Dough-based dishes

There was a time when guests would never leave Abkhazia without Abkhazian ajika. The main characteristic of Abkhazian ajika is smoked red pepper and dried spices cultivated on Abkhazia land.

Abkhazian Ajika is best with Abista. Abista is Abkhazian style ghomi (foxtail millet), it is made from yellow corn flour and a little salt. As a rule, abista goes with any type of Abkhazian dish. 

So-called Abkhazian elarji, or chemkva, is noteworthy. The white coloring of chemkva is one of the main characteristics of the dish.

In contrast with Megrelian elarji, chemkva is made from corn flour only. The corn flour is boiled in milk and fresh, sliced cheese is added. After boiling, usually using the wet hand, chemkva is placed on the plate like a pie. Chemkva is enjoyed with honey and matsoni, together or separately. 

Megrelian and Abkhazian traditional dish lovers still argue about the origin of dzrdz. Dzrdz is a dish that is made using matsoni, ajika, fresh onions, fresh garlic, salt, and greens. Then a boiled egg is cut in half, placed in this sauce, and put in the fridge to cool. This dish is served with ghomi. It is said, that dzrdzis an Abkhazian dish, and only later did it spread to Samegrelo. On the Abkhazian table, you come across dzrdz seasoned with Abkhazian ajika or green mint ajika. 

Meat and Vegetable Dishes

Abkhazian gastronomic culture has developed around cattle breeding since ancient times. Most of the Abkhazian territory is mountainous and the rural population has always followed cattle breeding and herding. Milk is processed in the field at the shepherd’s hut and dairy products are locally produced. There was a tradition to boil the dough in the milk, and meat, so the tradition of boiling a young goat in milk probably comes from here. Later smoked red pepper, or Ajika, was added and an unforgettable flavor was born. Today you can try this dish in Samegrelo, it is usually prepared for special occasions and is considered a delicacy. 

Akhuli is a vegetable and walnut dish with a long history. Akhuli is a kohlrabi pkhali (minced vegetable), and in Abkhazia, they have fascinating ways of cooking it. The leaves and the stem are first pickled, then washed and drained, and minced with walnuts, garlic, coriander, pepper, and salt. If acidity is missing, then vinegar is added. 

Akutagchaba - Akutagji in Abkhazian means an egg. Cut boiled eggs in two parts, take out the egg yolk and mix it with Abkhazian walnut adjika, pomegranate juice, or boiled vinegar. The prepared paste is then added to the boiled egg white, both parts are joined together, and adjika is applied from the outside. This is a common dish to cure a hangover and is served with plum or fruit vodka.

Aqvtzh is boiled chicken seasoned with Abkhazian walnut adjika. The boiled chicken is thinly cut and walnut ajika is applied. This is delicious!

Abkhazian sweets

The distinguished Abkhazian sweet is citrus fruit preserve (muraba).

According to one option, the preserve is made from pilled tangerines, but according to the second option, it is made from a mix of oranges, lemon, and grapefruit. This sweet jar-preserved mixture represents the best of Abkhazian aromas and cuisine. 

Preparation requires special rules: 

  • Make sure that the citrus skin does not have a specific flavor and bitterness;

  • Place it in boiling water three-four times;

  • Place it in fruit juice for 10-12 hours;

  • Boil the mixture three times for 5 minutes each. 


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