I’ve just made some churchkhela for someone as a present. If you’re not sure what it is, it’s a Georgian snack made of a string of walnut halves, dipped in a concentrated and thickened fresh grape juice. Here’s how I did that: First I threaded the walnut halves onto white thread, made of real cotton. Of course threading the needle was a bee-hatch! Some threads I put 8 walnut halves, some more and some less. Then onto the grape juice covering: I washed and then blitzed fresh grapes in a blender with very little water. I put the blitzed liquid through a sieve and into a large saucepan. This I gave a rapid boil for quite a while, until it was semi-gloopy. Then I poured a very little slurp of that gloopy juice into a cup and when it had cooled a bit, I added around a teaspoon of cornflour for each punnet of grapes. In Georgia they use wheat flour, but I’m not confident it would not go lumpy when I’m doing it, hence I opted for the cornflour. Anyways, once the cup of juice was well blended with the cornflour, I added that to the bubbling saucepan (stirring constantly). It thickened VERY quickly and I DIDN’T BURN IT “Woohoo!”. I pulled it off the heat. I then carefully dragged the strings of walnuts through it back and forth a few times to get the nuts covered. Then hung them up to cool and dry. Some I made with white grapes and some with red. They now look like upside-down candles in my pantry, but not quite as long as these beauties in the image I found on Pixels Free Photos. One good thing about churchkhela, is they’re quite healthy actually, with no added sugar. I think she’s going to enjoy them or at least feel happy with the attempt at one of her homeland traditional sweeties, bless ‘er.

Photo by Julia Volk on

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