Elarji – A Cheesy Cornmeal Delight from Samegrelo

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Introduction: Elarji is a traditional dish from the Samegrelo region of Georgia, made with coarse cornmeal, cornflour, and Sulguni cheese. This dish is known for its thick consistency and elastic texture. Served hot, Elarji is often enjoyed with Bazhe sauce, a Georgian walnut-based sauce. Follow this recipe to savor the unique flavors of this authentic Georgian dish at home.

Ingredients:

  • 200g of coarse cornmeal
  • 4 tbsp of cornflour
  • 1 kg of Sulguni cheese (new) or Mozzarella cheese as an alternative
  • Water
  • Optional: Bazhe sauce for serving

Instructions:

  1. Add the coarse cornmeal to a deep pot.

  2. Fill the pot with water. Impurities and discolored cornmeal will rise to the surface. Carefully drain the water and remove any floating impurities.

  3. Refill the pot with water and repeat the rinsing process until all impurities are removed.

  4. Once the rinsing is complete, add 1 liter of water to the cornmeal and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. When it has boiled, continue to cook on low heat for 30-35 minutes, stirring occasionally.

  5. Add 4 tbsp of cornflour to the pot and continuously stir/mash the mixture on low heat for about 15 minutes.

  6. The mixture should lose its cornflour taste and have a thick, elastic consistency.

  7. Add slices of Sulguni cheese (or Mozzarella) to the mixture and mash the cheese into it for about 2-3 minutes.

Serving: Serve Elarji hot, using a wet wooden spoon to ladle it onto a plate to prevent sticking. In Samegrelo, Elarji is traditionally enjoyed with Bazhe sauce, a Georgian sauce made with walnuts, garlic, and spices. Indulge in the rich and unique flavors of this authentic Georgian dish and enjoy your Elarji!

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