Tkemali – a sour plum sauce

(Last Updated On: 8th April 2018)

Recipes by Alice FeiringOur Georgian recipes have been shared with us by Alice Feiring, an American journalist and author who visited Georgia in 2011 and wrote the book ‘For the Love of Wine’. Written during her trip, she writes about not only Georgian wine but also her experiences with Georgian natural and vqvevri winemakers, along with sharing recipes of the Georgian food that she found along the way. In her own words, Alice describes her book as “My journey through the country of Georgia, full of people I adore, the wines, the characters, the drama, the silk worms, the homeopathic remedies, the food, the adventures and a special guest appearance by Stalin’s last remaining winemaker. It’s true!”

To learn more about Alice, visit


[print-me target=”div#printsection”]


  • 4 pounds plums
  • 4 heads garlic
  • 1⁄2 cup fresh coriander
  • finely chopped
  • 1 tsp mint, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp dill, chopped
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp fennel seed, grounded
  • 1 tsp red pepper
  • 2 1⁄2 tsp salt


  1. Cut plums in half.
  2. Place the plums in a medium saucepan and add water to cover. Simmer until the plums are soft, for about 10 minutes, depending on their size. Drain. 
  3. When cool, skin and pit. Discard pits and skins. Pass the plums through a sieve. Return them to the saucepan. Reserve the water.
  4. Add the garlic and coriander. Add salt and cook on medium temperature. If too sour, add some sugar to taste At the end, add the coriander, mint, and remaining spices.
  5. Add in the reserved water to achieve desired thickness. The mixture should be stirred well and cooked lightly.

Another staple of the table is Tkemali, which to me seems like a Georgian version of Indian tamarind sauce. The sauce is always on the Georgian table and adds zip and tang to any food, from potatoes to kinkhali to fried fish. I’d even dip my khachapuri in it. Unless you have a source for sour plums or a local wild plum tree, you’ll have to add acidity with extra lemon juice. The Georgian feast recipe calls for Santa Anna plums.

[Recipes, reproduced with permission from Alice Feiring. All images taken by FoodeMag dxb team]

More recipes from Alice Feiring ~


Latest posts from Dubai Dining section


User Rating

4 (2 Votes)



The salad recipe looks not only colourful but is also healthy and delicious!

1 Reply to "Tkemali - a sour plum sauce"

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Tkemali – a sour plum sauce

by Foodemag time to read: 2 min