This dish is served as an appetizer probably in all Georgian restaurants. It can be served either as a separate dish or as a part of “pkhali” assortment. It differs from restaurant to restaurant and everybody can pick their favorite way of preparing it. The recipe below is a variation that can be changed by adding/omitting/changing the number of spices to pick the favorite combination.
500 grams of eggplants (2-3 pcs),
250 grams of walnuts,
1 tsp dried blue fenugreek (Georgian: უცხოსუნელი - utskho suneli)
1 tsp of dried coriander,
1 tsp of paprika,
1 tsp dried marigold (Georgian: ყვითელიყვავილი - kviteli kvavili ; a yellow flower petals similar to saffron, used to add yellow coloring)
3 cloves of garlic,
3 tbsp of white wine vinegar,
salt (to taste)
about 100 ml of oil for frying the eggplant.
Mince the walnuts and garlic together. In a bowl blend together the spices, vinegar and the walnut-garlic paste. Mix thoroughly, adding 3-4 tbsp of water to obtain a thick paste.
Slice each eggplant lengthwise (without peeling) into 4-5 pieces. Heat the oil in a big, flat pan and fry the eggplant slices on a medium heat until cooked on both sides. Remove eggplant from the pan and use paper towels to absorb excess oil. Spread the walnut paste on each slice of the eggplant and fold it in half.
Serving: Serve cold. You can garnish it with any green leaves (e.g. parsley, coriander) and/or pomegranate seeds.