Georgian Badagi – Pressed and Condensed Grape Juice

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Introduction: Badagi is a traditional Georgian pressed and condensed grape juice used in various sweets and desserts such as Pelamushi, Churchkhela, Kaklucha, and Grape Tklapi. This recipe will guide you through the process of making your own badagi, which can be stored and used in various Georgian dishes or enjoyed as a refreshing, sweet drink.

Yield: About 2 liters of badagi

Ingredients:

  • 5 kg of ripe, white grapes

Preparation:

  1. Wash the grapes thoroughly and remove the stalks.
  2. Place a colander over a large bowl and mash the grapes, allowing the juice to collect in the bowl. Continue mashing until only skins and seeds are left.
  3. Use your hands to extract as much juice as possible from the remaining grape skins and seeds.
  4. Pour the grape juice into a large pot and bring it to a boil over medium heat. Then reduce the heat to low and let it simmer for up to 3 hours. The juice should reduce by a little less than half, resulting in a sugar (fructose) content of around 60%.
  5. During the simmering process, monitor the pot and remove any extraneous matter that forms on the surface of the grape liquid.
  6. After 3 hours, let the juice stand overnight.
  7. The next day, use a fine sieve to strain the juice into a bowl. The strained juice should be clear.

Storing and Serving:

  • Store the badagi in sealed glass jars for later use in a variety of Georgian dishes such as grape tklapi.
  • Alternatively, badagi can be enjoyed as a refreshing, sweet drink.

Enjoy your homemade Georgian Badagi!

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