Gebzhalia – Georgian Softened Cheese Dish

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Introduction: Gebzhalia is a traditional softened cheese dish from Georgia’s Samegrelo region, made with cottage cheese or matsoni. In this recipe, we use matsoni, a fermented milk product similar to yogurt. Matsoni is rich in minerals, protein, and calcium, making it a healthy and delicious addition to this recipe. Enjoy the flavors of Georgia with this flavorful and unique dish.

Serves: 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 1 kg of new cheese
  • 1 kg of matsoni
  • 2-3 hot green peppers
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 100 grams of fresh mint
  • Salt (amount dependent upon personal preference)

Preparation:

  1. Chop the fresh mint and green peppers, and remove skins from the garlic.
  2. Add the chopped mint, peppers, garlic, and salt to a mortar and crush together using a pestle.
  3. Slice the cheese. Boil water in a large pot and add the cheese as soon as the water is boiling.
  4. Use a wooden spoon to smash the cheese. After 2 minutes, turn off the heat and continue to smash the cheese for another 2-3 minutes until it is soft and flexible.
  5. Remove the softened cheese and place it on a wet wooden preparation board. Use your hands and fingers to knead and flatten the cheese.
  6. When the cheese has been flattened, use a rolling pin to roll out the cheese into a square shape that is about 5-6 mm thick.
  7. Add the matsoni to a mixing bowl, together with half of the crushed mint, peppers, and garlic. Add up to 200 ml of the water used to soften the cheese. Stir thoroughly.
  8. Add the remaining half of the crushed mint, peppers, and garlic to the surface of the rolled-out cheese.
  9. Use your fingers to carefully roll up the cheese.
  10. Cut the rolled-up cheese into small portions.

Serving: Enjoy your Gebzhalia as a delicious appetizer or side dish.

Enjoy your Georgian Gebzhalia!

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