First time I tried Khinkali was in St Petersburg, Russia at the restaurant across the street from our apartment. Georgian food is amazing, and not commonly recognized outside of the former Soviet Union. I am not an expert on Georgian food, but had to learn how to make Khinkali. They are like Russian Pelmeni dumplings on crack (say no to drugs kids).
Growing up eating Pelmeni (Siberian Ravioli), a Russian boiled dumpling with beef and onion, Khinkali had so much more flavor! It helps that I love eating cilantro and cumin, a perfect mixed with the ground beef. You can pull back the herbs and spices to make a more boring recipe, but I don’t recommend! You could also use lamb, or a mixture of different meats such as pork and beef.
The Khinkali meat mixture feels quite watery when preparing, due to the added water. The water is necessary to ensure that the pockets of meat cook in their own broth. When biting the Khinkali, the hot broth pours out!
To properly eat Khinkali, hold by the top dough knob of the dumpling. Bite carefully into the dumpling as the hot broth will gush out. Eat the rest of the dumpling ,leaving the dough knob on your plate. Truth be told, I sometimes eat the whole thing as I love fresh pasta!
The other secret Georgian spice is Blue Fenugreek. Usually easily found in your Russian deli or European Deli, also called Utskho Suneli. I ran out, and had to use regular ground Fenugreek for this recipe. The difference is that Blue Fenugreek is milder, so I suggest using ½ a teaspoon less if you can only find regular Fenugreek.
I know that my Khinkali aren’t as pretty as a native Georgian cook’s are, however, I’m excite to share this authentic recipe. One of my favorite dumplings, Georgian Khinkali. Popular in Russia and across the former Soviet Union. You’ve got to try this! Bon Appetit! Приятного аппетита!
Khinkali Georgian Dumplings (Хинкали)
You've got to try Georgian Khinkali (Хинкали). Popular in Russia and across the former Soviet Union. Broth filled meat dumplings mixed with Cilantro, Blue Fenugreek, Cumin and more! Khinkali Recipe (Хинкали)
For the dough
- 4 cups flour
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 egg beaten optional
- 1¼ cups water
For the filling
- 500 g of ground beef
- 1 onion finely diced
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1½ teaspoons Blue Fenugreek (utskho suneli)
- ½ teaspoon chili powder optional
- 3 tbsp chopped cilantro
- 3 tbsp chopped parsley
- 1 cup water
- serve with black pepper
In a bowl, mix together the flour salt and water until dough forms. Transfer to a work surface and knead the dough until smooth, about 4-5 minutes Allow the dough to rest for about 45 minutes.
Prepare the filling. Using your hands, mix the ground beef, diced onion, salt, cumin, blue fenugreek, chili powder, cilantro, parsley and water until evenly mixed. Set aside.
To prepare the dough, cut a piece of dough, roll it out enough to place in a Kitchenaid Pasta Roller (or a hand pasta roller). On Kitchenaid Pasta Roller, it was on setting 1. Cut the thin dough sheet into squares about 10cm wide. You can cut round dough circles, however this method is faster. If manually rolling out the dough, roll it out about ¼" thin.
Place about 2 tbsp of filling in the middle of the square dough piece. Close it up by forming a sack by pinching pieces of dough into each other (creating pleats). Pinch the pleats together to seal the sack, forming a little knob at the top, and twist off any excess dough from the top of the dough knob. Repeat until all the dough and meat is used.
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Drop the fresh Khinkakli into the boiling water. Cook for about 7-8 minutes, until they float. Drain and serve with black pepper.