Chahokhbili - we prepare tasty, fragrant and simple
Recently, men are increasingly asking our housewives to cook them one of the dishes of traditional Georgian cuisine, chakhokhbili. There is nothing surprising in this, because it is not just hearty and useful, it is still incredibly tasty, fragrant and very appetizing!
Having eaten a good portion of Chahokhbili, you no longer want to think about anything else, because it can satiate even the largest and most active man for a long time, while, surprisingly, there are not any special or rare ingredients in its composition. It's all about skill! Among Georgians, there is an opinion that there are as many recipes and secrets for cooking such a dish as there are houses in Georgia, and, interestingly, this is not an exaggeration.
Chakhokhbili does not have the only correct cooking recipe, all deviations in one direction or another take place, most importantly, that the dish does not lose its unique taste. If you still don’t know how to make chakhokhbis tasty,then we will be happy to share with you important recommendations, so to speak, first-hand: from Georgian hostesses, but they certainly know how to do it right.
The name of the dish, according to one of the versions, comes from the Georgian word “hokhobi”, which is translated into Russian as “pheasant”. The fact is that originally it was cooked from pheasant meat, the dish turned out to be incredibly tasty and, of course, quite expensive, so not everyone could afford to eat the juicy and delicious chakhokhbili.
Today, this dish is made from any bird, and sometimes even pork or beef, but the most popular option is chakhokhbili made from chicken. Despite the fact that pheasant meat in such a dish is rarely seen today, the main point remains the same: pieces of meat are fried in a dry hot frying pan, after which they are put to stew together with vegetables in sour sauce.
It is very important that the poultry meat quickly becomes covered with a dense golden crust during the first roasting, so that all the juice that is inside remains there, and the dish is very juicy.
How to cook this chakhokhbili?
If you want to pamper your native chakhokhbili in Georgian, try a dish that will be very close in taste and appearance to the present, then you need to learn a few important secrets.
- Choose meat for the dish correctly: if it is chicken, then it should be homemade, but not more than three months old. It makes little sense to buy a broiler bird if you want to get a real dish, as it lacks rigidity and the meat quickly breaks up into fibers, which results in an ordinary stew, and not a magical and juicy chakhokhbili.
- The bird for the dish is usually cut into rather large pieces, this is done so that it is convenient to eat with your hands, as it was done in the old days. Once it looked like this: a dish with chakhokhbili was placed in the center of the table, pieces of shoti were dipped into it and pieces of appetizing meat were collected by hand.
- There are many recipes where the main ingredient is not poultry, but pork or beef, is that right? Of course, if you cook everything according to the technology of chakhokhbili, the result will still be tasty, however, those who want to get as close as possible to the original source still recommend using chicken meat.
- Once upon a time such a dish was cooked without a single drop of butter: the meat for frying was chosen so fat that it was perfectly cooked on its own in a dry frying pan. If you use lean chicken meat, then you can still use sunflower oil; pieces of meat should be spread into the frying pan only when a light smoke appears over the hot butter.
- After the meat is browned to a golden crust, the turn of vegetables begins. Usually the following are onion rings, with which the chicken is fried until half cooked, and then the Bulgarian pepper and, at the very end, the tomatoes are laid out. Do not regret for such a Georgian dish of vegetables, there must be really a lot of them, which gives the result a special and delicate flavor notes.
- As for spices, they should be laid out last, otherwise your dish runs the risk of having unpleasant bitterness. Commonly used spices are: oregano seeds, saffron, coriander, hops-suneli, as well as various greens.
- A long time ago, a dry wine was used to make chakhokhbili, and it was added to add extra acid and zest to the dish.Today, this method, although rarely, is still used occasionally.
- In fact, chahokhbili is a dish that can replace both the second and the first, usually it does not need any garnish, but if you still want, then it can be served with potatoes, homemade noodles, rice or other porridges.
Georgian Chakhokhbili Recipe
What we need:
- chicken (thighs) - 1.5 kg;
- tomatoes - 6 pcs .;
- onions - 4 pcs .;
- Bulgarian pepper - 3 pcs .;
- garlic - 4 cloves;
- hot red pepper - 1 pc .;
- basil - 1 bunch;
- cilantro - 1 bundle;
- hops-suneli - 1 tbsp. a spoon;
- butter - 2 tbsp. spoons;
Pre-cut the chicken into equal pieces of medium size, wash them thoroughly and dry them. If the chicken is homemade and fairly fat, then fry it in a dry frying pan, if not - you can add a little sunflower oil. We lay out pieces of chicken in a well-heated frying pan, do not forget to turn them over all the time, so that they do not have time to burn, but just grab a golden crust.
At this time we are engaged in vegetables: peel the onions and cut them into half rings, free the Bulgarian pepper from the seeds and also cut it into strips.Tomatoes must be freed from the skin, for this we make a small cut on them and pour boiling water over it - after that it is removed easily and simply.
Add onions to the frying pan with meat after 10 minutes of frying, fry for a few more minutes with onions and add the Bulgarian pepper. After 5-7 minutes, you can add chopped tomatoes, cover the frying pan with a lid and blow everything together for about 20 minutes. Onions can be pre-fried in a separate pan with butter, and then add it together with tomatoes, so that it will be more tender and golden.
Ideally, when stewing under a lid, water is not added, vegetables and meat should be fully cooked in their own juice, but this is not always the case, so you can add a little boiled water in the process. Sometimes, if the tomato was not enough, the meat is stewed in tomato sauce.
When chakhokhbili almost ready, you can add finely chopped greens, as well as all the other spices at their own discretion, garlic cloves surely pass through the garlic press. Do not forget about the hot red pepper: remove the seeds, finely chop the flesh and also send it to the pan, simmer another 7 minutes. After the time has elapsed, chochbili is ready!
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