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(Georgian Dumplings)

These dumplings, which can be filled with meat or cheese, are one of the most popular dishes in the country of Georgia or Sakartvelo. They were also one of our favorites when we were lucky enough to visit the country a few years ago. Traditionally, the dumplings are eaten by hand, holding the top knot of the pleat. The knot is then left on the plate, so the restaurant can count them and know for how many dumplings to charge you. This recipe uses ground beef, but you may substitute ground pork or lamb, or with crumbly farm cheese.

A plate of 3 rows of Khinkali by Simon Majumdar. Text, "Go Everywhere, Eat Everything"

Khinkali (Georgian Dumpling) Recipe

(Makes About 8-10)


For the Dough:

  • 2 Cups All-Purpose Flour (Plus more for rolling)

  • ½ Teaspoon Salt

  • 1 Egg (Beaten)

  • ¼ - ½ Cup Water (Enough to make a dough that comes fully together)

For the Filling:

  • 1 lb Ground Beef (Can Use Ground Pork, Lamb, a Meat Combination, or Fresh Crumbly Farmers Cheese)

  • ½ White Onion (Minced in a Blender)

  • 2 Cloves of Garlic (Pureed)

  • ¼ Cup White Wine (Optional – Can Use Stock or Water)

  • ¼ Cup Water

  • ½ Teaspoon Ground Cumin

  • 1 Teaspoon Caraway Seeds

  • ½ Teaspoon Salt

  • ½ Teaspoon Ground Black Pepper

  • 1 Teaspoon Fresh Thyme (Finely Chopped)

  • 1 Tablespoon Italian Parsley (Finely Chopped)


For the Dough:

  1. Combine all the ingredients to form a dough.

  2. Sprinkle flour on a board and knead the dough until it becomes smooth and slightly elastic.

  3. Wrap in plastic wrap and place in the fridge for 30 minutes.

  4. When ready to use, divide the dough into two portions and roll each one until it is about ¼-inch in thickness.

  5. Use a metal cookie cutter or the rim of a coffee cup to cut out 8-10 rounds.


For the Filling:

  1. Place all of the ingredients in a bowl and combine well.

  2. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for 30 minutes.


To Make the Dumplings:

  1. Take each circle of dough, and on a floured board, roll out until they are a circle about 3x the original size.

  2. Place a tablespoon of the filling in the center of the dough, and gently pleat the sides so that the top of the filling is completely covered. 

  3. Squeeze the knot together to make sure it is a firm seal.


To Prepare:

  1. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil.

  2. Once the water is boiling, stir the water with a cooking spoon in a circular motion to create a vortex or whirlpool. This should keep the dumplings from sticking. Add the dumplings.

  3. You may need to gently move them around with a wooden spoon if they stick to the bottom of the pot.

  4. Cook for 8 minutes.  As they are cooked, they should rise to the surface of the water.

  5. Remove from the pot using a slotted spoon so the dumplings drain.

  6. Place on a serving platter and serve warm.

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