Serving 150903b
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Sour Beef Stew
R. Georgia
  -   Kharcho
5 #  
3 hr  
This moderately sour stew has only a modest amount of beef, but is spectacularly high in flavor. It can also be made with other meats, or with chicken, turkey or goose. It can be made with or without walnuts, depending on preference. This recipe can stand as a "one dish meal" for 6 people. The photo example was made with walnuts, and with tamarind paste for sourness.


Beef, lean (1)
-- Spices
Coriander seed
Marigold petals (2)
Chili Powder (3)
-- Herbs
Cilantro (4)
Parsley, flat
Walnut meats (opt. 5)  
Rice, long grain
Sour Plum (5)
-- Garnish
PREP   -   (1-1/2 hr )
  1. Cut BEEF into small cubes, 1/2 to 3/4 inch on a side. Remove all excess fat.
  2. Scald TOMATOES one minute in boiling water. Quench in cold water, peel and chop fine.
  3. Chop ONIONS fine. Crush GARLIC and chop fine. Mix with Tomatoes.
  4. Grind together all Spices items.
  5. Chop CILANTRO and PARSLEY fine. Mix.
  6. Prepare whatever you are using for Sour Plum as needed.
  7. IF Using: grind WALNUTS fine (a mini-prep processor works well).
RUN   -   (2-1/4 hr)
  1. In a pot, 3 quarts or larger, place Beef and cover well with water. Bring to a rolling boil for a minute or so. Pour out into the sink and rinse the crud off the beef.
  2. Clean the pot and return the Beef along with 6 cups Water. Bring to a boil, turn down to a light simmer and simmer for about 1 hour.
  3. Stir Rice into the pot and simmer another 15 minutes.
  4. Stir in Tomato mix and Spices mix. Stir in Walnuts (if using). Simmer another 15 minutes.
  5. Stir in whatever you're using for Sour Plum, then Herb mix. Simmer for about 10 minutes.
  6. Serve hot, garnished with chopped Cilantro.
  1. Beef:   Wight is boneless and with all excess fat removed. One of the tougher stewing cuts or roasts will be fine.
  2. Marigold Petals:   The measure is for finely powdered. Whole petals are very springy and hard to measure, but will be about 5 times the amount lightly packed. In Georgia, French Marigold (Imeruli Shaphrani - Tagetes patula) is used, but it is not easy to find in North America. Pot Marigold (Calendula officinalis petals can be found on-line and are a reasonable substitute. For details see our Calendula / Marigold page.
  3. Chili Powder:   The pattern recipe calls for "Hot Hungarian Paprika" but doesn't give an amount. I use Indian Reshampatti, which is a little hotter and has good flavor. The amount given will give the dish a just noticeable but not obtrusive heat. For details see our Chili Page.
  4. Cilantro & Parsley:   Weights given are after removing stems and damaged leaves. 2-1/2 ounces of Cilantro will provide about 3/4 cup chopped fine, and 1-1/2 ounces of Parsley will provide about 1/2 cup chopped fine. Yes, that's a lot of herbs - it's Georgian.
  5. Sour Plum:   The pattern recipe calls for "1 sheet sour plum leather", without specifying size or weight. Here in Los Angeles, only apricot leather is widely available and it isn't sour enough. Dried sour plums are occasionally available here, but likely not where you are. The pattern recipe gives as an alternative "juice and grated zest (yellow only) of one lemon". A good alternative used by Georgians in North America is easily available Tamarind Paste. Block form provides the best flavor. 2 ounces cut from a block will make this recipe about as sour as you want it - for details and directions see our Tamarind page.
  6. Prep Time:   Prep time is long, but more than 1/2 hour is for stemming the herbs. This task can be assigned to a lesser skilled person. Chopping them is another 5 minutes or so, and if you have a Mezzaluna, which is relatively safe, you can assign that task as well. If you don't have a mezzaluna, get one - it chops herbs much faster than a chopping knife, and the herbs look better because they are not bruised.
  7. U.S. measure: t=teaspoon, T=Tablespoon, c=cup, qt=quart, oz=ounce, #=pound, cl=clove in=inch, ar=as required tt=to taste
tmm_cowstew1 150903b ccsg155   -
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