“No one is born a great cook , one learns by doing” Julia Childs
It’s one of the traveling foodie experiences we love the most – cooking classes. What can possibly be better than learning from a professional cook or chef how to make the local cuisine? It’s way up there on our ‘Must Do’ list in any country we visit….and Georgia was no different.
We had been told about the food in Georgia by a few traveling friends of ours. “You guys are going to love this place” they said “we have 2 words for you – Cheesy Bread”. And with those two simple words we knew that Georgia would be our next travel destination.
What can we say – we love cheese!
It also doesn’t hurt to mention that Georgia is one of the oldest wine regions in the world, with wine production dated back to 8,000 years ago. And many local wineries are still producing wine using the traditional methods that have been passed down from generation to generation.
So we booked our flights and we were off to spend 6 whole weeks indulging in everything food and wine related that Georgia had to offer.
I thought at this point I’d add in a little map for you all as some of you might not actually know where I’m talking about.
You see, while it is a very old country, it is relatively untouched by foreign tourism – mostly just surrounding countries like Russia, Turkey, Armenia and a few from Germany.
But this trend is not going to last for long. People are starting to realise that Georgia is:
a) Stunning in natural beauty
b) Very affordable
c) Rich with fascinating history and culture
And finally what’s most important to us – has amazing food and wine!
It won’t be long until Georgia is the next hottest foodie destination in Europe – so we recommend going there now,, and beat the flood of tourist (which is coming very very soon, trust us).
What to Eat in Georgia (Europe)
This list could go on forever – we were so impressed with the variety of foods available! But in this article I’m going to focus on the dishes we not only ate, but had the opportunity to learn how to make with Taste Georgia.
Our full and extensive article on What to Eat in Georgia is Coming Soon!
Lets start with the dish that brought us to this country in the first place – Georgian Cheesy Bread – also known as Katchapuri. Now, we were under the impression that there was just one cheesy bread, but upon arrival we realised that this was not the case at all. Our cheese loving hearts leapt for joy when we realised that there is in fact at least 9 different types of Katchapuri.
That’s Right!!! 9 different types of delicious cheese stuffed breads. It’s enough to make all carb addicts around the world drop what they are doing, and hop a plane to Georgia immediately….but at least finish the article first ok!
During our time in Georgia we made the effort to try them all….how could we not! But our all time favourite is the Adjarian khachapuri, where the dough is moulded into a boat shape, loaded with delish local sulguni cheese and baked in the oven. Before it is served, an egg is cracked on the top, and a solid dollop of butter is added for extra naughty tasty goodness.
We not only ate this dish, but made it our mission to learn how to make it.
During our cooking class with Taste Georgia we had the pleasure of seeing exactly how the dish was made, step by step of the way.
The way you eat it is you tear off the ends and dip it in the cheesy filling, ensuring you mix the egg and butter into the filling. The first mouthful you ever have WILL change your life forever!
We also saw how to make Imeruli khachapuri which is probably the most common type that you’ll find in Georgia – and seriously tasty!
All of the ingredients are very similar with making the Katchapuri’s, the main difference seems to be the shape of the breads and a few differences here and there. So the good news is once you have the recipe down – you can then work your way through learning how to make all 9 Katchapuri’s by yourself when you return home! But we are not going to give away the recipe here. You’ll have to go and experience the class for yourself!
So much cheesy awesome….
Lets move on to another Georgian dish that I personally am completely addicted to – Khinkali.
Kninkali is a Georgian dumpling that comes with a variety of fillings, but the most popular is the meat soup dumpling. Think Xiaolongbao but much, much bigger and ohhhh so tasty!
They also come stuffed with cheese (naturally), mushrooms or potato.
You will see locals order mountainous trays loaded with Khinkali because:
- They are super affordable – like .30cents each!!!
- They are stupidly delicious
- They are totally addictive – trust me I’m suffering withdrawals as we speak!
We just had to learn to make these delicious mouthfulls of yum with Taste Georgia – and the best news is both the Khinkali and Khachapuri is quite easy to make if you have some time on your hands.
Look! My first ever Khinkali and I’m folding the dough like a pro!
The Khinkali we made with Taste Georgia were the popular meat ones, which are usually a mixture of beef and pork meat and fresh parsley.
But of course there are the many options I mentions before….lets not forget the cheese!!!
Sooo much tasty tasty cheese……
We now know without a doubt that Georgia is one of the ULTIMATE Foodie destinations in Europe – and we will be sharing a few more articles in the coming months that will have you adding this incredible country to your for experience bucket list. Trust us it will be worth it!!
Taste Georgia not only run cooking classes, with them you can find the best food and wine tour to suit you. Georgia has so much to offer and Taste Georgia are there to help you explore this amazing part of Europe: Food – Wine – History – and a bit more food!
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