A crunchy autumn salad with tart and spicy tkemali dressing
I love taking inspiration from ingredients that I encounter on my travels and using them in ways that wouldn’t necessarily be used in their home country. Tkemali, the ubiquitous Georgian plum, garlic and wild mint condiment, is traditionally eaten with everything—meat, fish, eggs—but apart from beetroot, not so much with vegetables.
Its qualities, however, are those of a really superior dressing—tart, a little spicy and garlicky plus a hint of sweetness—and it works so well with bitter crunchy vegetables. Do experiment with the ingredients here; I bet it would work equally well with some young sweet cabbage, robust lettuce or radicchio.
1 tbsp pomegranate molasses
50g Tina’s tkemali
Honey, to taste, if needed
2 heads of chicory, sliced lengthways into 8 wedges
1 kohlrabi, peeled and thinly sliced
50g radishes, thinly sliced
25g sorrel leaves (or watercress)
For the dressing, mix the molasses through the tkemali then taste, adding some salt or a little honey if you think it’s too tart. It should really taste strong and pack a punch.
Toss the chicory, kohlrabi and radishes in a bowl, then arrange in a serving dish with the sorrel leaves (or watercress) and serve with the dressing drizzled over.
Recipe: Olia Hercules
Image: Elena Heatherwick
From Kaukasis: The Cookbook by Olia Hercules