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Tkemali – Georgian Plum Sauce Recipe

Tkemali is a sweet-sour, aromatic and flavorful Georgian plum sauce, perfect for roasted vegetables, grilled food, and salad dressings.
Course Condiment
Cuisine Georgian
Keyword tkemali
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 20
Calories 27kcal

Ingredients

  • 3 glass jars 220 ml or 8 oz, sterilized
  • 2.2 lbs lbs or 1 kg ripe red plums
  • 1/2 cup or 100 ml water
  • 4-5 large cloves garlic minced
  • 1 small red chili pepper finely chopped
  • 5 tablespoons fresh cilantro chopped (or 5 teaspoons dry)
  • 3 tablespoons fresh dill chopped (or 3 teaspoons dry)
  • 2 teaspoons fresh peppermint chopped (or 2/3 teaspoon dry)
  • 1 tablespoon dried tarragon
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 2 teaspoons khmeli suneli
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2/3 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons pomegranate juice
  • olive oil

Instructions

  • Cut plums in quarters or halves, remove stones and place in a pot with a little water. Bring them to a boil over medium heat and simmer over medium low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
    2.2 lbs lbs or 1 kg ripe red plums, 1/2 cup or 100 ml water
    Tkemali is a Georgian plum sauce, perfect for vegetables, grilled meat, fish, seafood and salad dressings. It's pungent, sweet-sour, aromatic and flavorful.
  • When plums are soft, drain them using a sieve and keep the juice (it's delicious and healthy). Using a wooden spoon, rub plums through the sieve and transfer them back into the pot. Alternatively, pulse them in a blender.
    Tkemali is a Georgian plum sauce, perfect for vegetables, grilled meat, fish, seafood and salad dressings. It's pungent, sweet-sour, aromatic and flavorful.
  • Add garlic, chili pepper, cilantro, dill, peppermint, dried tarragon, ground coriander, khmeli suneli, salt, sugar, black pepper and pomegranate juice. You might need more sugar if you use sour plums (see notes). Stir to combine. Simmer for 5 more minutes.
    4-5 large cloves garlic, 1 small red chili pepper, 5 tablespoons fresh cilantro, 3 tablespoons fresh dill, 2 teaspoons fresh peppermint, 1 tablespoon dried tarragon, 2 teaspoons ground coriander, 2 teaspoons khmeli suneli, 2 teaspoons salt, 1 tablespoon sugar, 2/3 teaspoons ground black pepper, 3 tablespoons pomegranate juice
    Tkemali is a Georgian plum sauce, perfect for vegetables, grilled meat, fish, seafood and salad dressings. It's pungent, sweet-sour, aromatic and flavorful.
  • Pour the sauce into hot and dry jars. Cover with 1-2 teaspoons of olive oil to preserve. Seal and store in the fridge or in a cool place for at least 2-3 months. To store it longer, see the canning instructions below. Enjoy!
    olive oil
    Tkemali Georgian Plum Sauce - Served Sauce witha Spoon Inside Ready for the Meal

Video

Notes

Top Tips

  • Tkemali is a flavorful and nutrient-dense Georgian plum sauce that is a great healthier alternative to ketchup or cranberry sauce.
  • Georgian tkemali sauce is pungent, sweet-sour, aromatic and full of flavor.
  • Serve it with roasted vegetables, (red) beets, burgers, potato wedges, any kind of protein, grilled food, tempeh, fresh bread, in salad dressings, as a bread spread, or as a dip for stir fried veggies.
  • From 1 kilogram of plums (2.2 lbs) you will get around 650 ml (0.7 liquid quart) of sauce. Double the amounts to make a bigger batch.
  • Depending on the type of plums you use, you’ll need to adjust the taste by adding more sugar if the sauce tastes too sour.
  • You can store it in the fridge or in a cool place for up to 3 months.
  • To make your sauce last longer, sterilize your jars (boil them for 15 minutes in water) and pour some olive oil on the surface before you seal them. Make sure the jars are hot and dry when you pour the hot sauce in.

Recipe Variations

  • Traditional tkemali is made from a variety of green sour plum. However, you can use  other types of plums as well. Depending on the type of plums adjust the amount of sugar you use for the sauce.
  • Traditionally, herbs like dill, cilantro, summer savory and pennyroyal are used for tkemali but you are free to experiment with whatever herbs you like. I used fresh dill, cilantro, peppermint and dried tarragon, as well as dried coriander and khmeli suneli mix. You can skip it, as it is not traditionally used, but I found that tkemali tastes better if you do use it.

Nutrition

Serving: 20g | Calories: 27kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1mg | Potassium: 106mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 221IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 9mg | Iron: 1mg