Sour Plum Sauce (Tkemali)

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Recipe by Witch Doctor

The Georgians have this special dark red tart plum, called a tkemali they use in a lot of their recipes, especially sauces. It lends a sharp, tart flavor to the foods it is used with. To reproduce the flavor (unless you have a tkemali tree in your backyard) is to use slightly unripe fresh prunes and add lemon juice.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. In a large non-metallic saucepan, combine the prunes and enough water to barely cover.
  2. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer, covered, until the prunes are soft, 10 to 15 minutes.
  3. Drain the prunes, then pit and put them through a food mill.
  4. Return the prunes to the saucepan.
  5. Add the cilantro, garlic, coriander seeds fenugreek, red pepper flakes to taste, ¼ cup lemon juice, and salt.
  6. Bring to a boil and heat for 2 to 3 minutes, then remove from the heat.
  7. Taste and add more lemon juice, if needed.
  8. Cool the sauce to room temperature and transfer to a sterilized 1 quart jar.
  9. Top with the oil, seal, and refrigerate.
  10. The sauce should stand for at least 4 to 6 hours before serving.
  11. This sauce will keep in the refrigerator for up to 2 months.

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