Adzhika (Hot Pepper Relish)

AjikaNo Georgian cook would think of serving grilled or roasted meat plain, without any sort of condiment or garnish. This sauce will enliven meats. In my area of Samegrelo or Mingrelia, we serve meats with this sauce and add melon to sooth the tongue.

Makes About One Pint

8 garlic cloves, peeled
1 large celery stalk, including leaves
1/2 pound of fresh hot peppers, including seeds
1 large red bell pepper, cored and seeded
2 cups of coarsely chopped fresh dill
1 1/2 cups of coarsely chopped cilantro
1/3 cup of red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon of salt

Using the pulse control of a food processor, grind the garlic slightly. Coarsely chop the celery, hot peppers and red bell pepper and add them to the garlic. Pulse again. Add the chopped herbs and pulse to a medium coarseness. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and stir in the vinegar and salt. Cover and let stand overnight before packing into jars. Either store in the refrigerator or process in a water bath for longer storage. This relish tastes best when allowed to sit for 3 days before serving.

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