Actions to take when sweets dry out

If churchkhela has dried out, there are several ways that will help restore softness to the Georgian delicacy. But, it is important that the product is not spoiled - the surface of the condensed juice is a good environment for the development of pathogenic microorganisms, and if it has hardened, then you can soften it slightly and not get digestive problems like this:

  1. It is possible to make churchkhela softer if you hold it over steam for a short time. But, in this case, you need to eat it right away, since the delicacy cannot be stored further.
  2. You can soften the juice crust in the microwave - the Georgian delicacy must be heated in it for 2-10 seconds. After this, it must be eaten within the next 2 hours.
  3. In extreme cases, water can make Caucasian sweetness softer, but if you overdo it, there is a risk of irreversible damage to the product.

The best option is to prevent the treat from hardening, and to do this it must be stored in compliance with each of the rules.

What is included in churchkhela?

The components that the factory manufacturer uses in the process of preparing churchkhela are indicated on the vacuum packaging.

To keep the delicacy for a long time, it is packed in a piece of fabric or cardboard packaging.

When making this classic delicacy, the use of preservatives, sucrose and starch is avoided.

The constant ingredients of the Georgian dessert include:

  • ground Voloshsky and almond nuts, hazel;
  • cherry, apple, grape or apricot nectar;
  • wheat or corn flour.

Kernels obtained from fresh walnuts are strung on a white thread, and the fruit juice is boiled and thickened with corn flour.

The thread with strung kernels is dipped into the resulting mixture and then dried for 2 hours. If necessary, churchkhela is soaked in nectar again, then hung in a secluded place and left for 7-14 days.

To keep the treat for a long time, it is packed in a piece of fabric or cardboard packaging. The room where the sweets are stored must be free of moisture: this can cause the taste of the product to deteriorate.

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What is churchkhela made from?

In order to understand how to properly store a particular product, you first need to understand what it is made from. It is this information that can be the key to long and successful storage. As we have already said, churchkhela is a dish that came to us from Georgia. According to the original recipe, it includes the following components:

  • nuts;
  • grape or pomegranate juice;
  • corn flour.

Please note that the original recipe does not include the use of sugar. Residents of Georgia developed it in such a way that the delicacy was not only tasty, but also as beneficial as possible for the body. Of course, in our conditions, the original recipe is becoming less and less common, so it is quite difficult to find real churchkhela in our country. Churchkhela is prepared as follows:

  1. Grape or pomegranate juice is boiled until it is several times smaller.
  2. Corn flour is added to the resulting raw material. This is necessary for the mass to thicken.
  3. Nuts are strung on a string and topped with a mixture of juice and cornmeal.
  4. The finished churchkhela is hung in the shade and left for several weeks so that the juice thickens completely.

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If the product is made according to the original recipe, there are no problems with its storage. Such churchkhela can lie for a long time at room temperature without losing its properties. The only caveat is that it is better to put the treat in a paper bag or wrap it in a dry cloth. It is recommended to store in a dry place.

However, as we have already said, the original churchkhela is practically never found in our country. Due to the great demand among vacationers, its production was put on stream and everything was done to speed it up and reduce the cost. This is especially true for juice, which is quite expensive. To obtain raw materials in sufficient volume, but at the same time save money, granulated sugar, water can be added to it, or a surrogate can be used (if you’re lucky, compote, otherwise, some kind of chemical at all).

Beneficial properties of churchkhela, its possible harm to the body

Churchkhela is an ancient Georgian dish made from nuts strung on a thread and filled with thick natural juice. The benefits and harms of such products mainly depend on the set of ingredients used. In any case, if technical recommendations for the implementation of the process are correctly followed, the delicacy is enriched with substances necessary for the body.

Another advantage of the dessert is its nutritional value; the product perfectly satisfies hunger, but does not overload the digestive tract. Properly prepared churchkhela can be stored for quite a long time without worrying about the destruction of beneficial ingredients and the disappearance of therapeutic properties.

Classic way to prepare churchkhela

In the traditional version of preparing churchkhela, only walnuts and grape juice are used. The process itself is quite simple, although it takes a lot of time. It is worth noting that only churchkhela prepared from natural ingredients and dried under natural conditions acquires characteristic beneficial properties. Store-bought products may be tasty, but the likelihood of obtaining medicinal results from their use is minimal.

The process of preparing the delicacy looks like this:

  • Juice is extracted from grapes and used undiluted. In order for the liquid to reach the desired thick consistency, corn flour is added to it.
  • Take a regular strong thread. Walnuts are threaded onto it using a needle. You should not make the “necklace” too long, as it may not support its own weight.

Tip: When preparing products, you should use only raw, but well-dried nuts. If the ingredients are fried, they will fall apart in your hands and cannot be threaded. Even real churchkhela is not prepared from crushed ingredients; its taste is not at all what it should be.

  • Next, the workpiece is dipped into the thickened juice several times. It should cover the product with a dense, uniform layer. If the liquid is not very thick, then after a couple of hours the churchkhela can be covered with juice several more times. Such products are sweeter.
  • Semi-finished products are sent for drying in a dark and dry room. It should be from 5 to 10 days.

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The use of non-natural thickeners can significantly facilitate the process of preparing churchkhela, but this is not recommended. Such experiments will not only reduce the usefulness of the product, they can harm the body.

Modern options for preparing churchkhela

Today, the number of recipes for preparing churchkhela, or, as it is called in some countries, “chuchkhela,” has increased significantly. The following products are now often used as main and auxiliary ingredients:

  • In addition to grape juice, apple, orange, plum, cherry, apricot and other drinks began to be actively used. The product acquires a special taste and properties if it is prepared with pomegranate juice.
  • The base can also be almost anything, the main thing is that the components can be strung on a thread. These can be peanuts, cashews, pecans, hazelnuts.
  • Today, dried fruits are increasingly being added to products, for example, raisins, prunes, dried apricots, and dried berries. The syrup-drenched pieces are rolled in whole or crushed seeds.

Depending on the set of ingredients used, the properties of the product and its calorie content will change. This must be taken into account, especially if churchkhela is intended for children, the elderly or overweight people.

Composition and beneficial properties of churchkhela

Churchkhela, prepared exclusively from natural ingredients, becomes a source of many useful substances for the body. Regardless of what ingredients are used in its production, the finished product will contain the following chemical compounds and elements:

  • Glucose and fructose. They are excellent energy suppliers.
  • Organic acids. Participants in metabolic processes, stimulants of chemical reactions.
  • Vegetable fats. They prevent the formation of blood clots, reduce the level of harmful cholesterol in the blood, and stimulate brain activity.
  • Main groups of vitamins. Prevent the development of deficiency conditions, increase the functionality of organs and systems.
  • Mineral elements. Maintains acid-base and water balances. They provide fabrics with building material. Necessary for chemical reactions.

Thus, regular consumption of churchkhela, even in small quantities, allows you to achieve the following results:

  1. Increases activity due to energy production. The activity of the brain improves, the work of all organs and systems is stimulated.
  2. The functioning of the heart and blood vessels improves. The risk of developing atherosclerosis and hypertension is reduced.
  3. The body is rejuvenated. This has a positive effect not only on external data, but also on general condition.

Of course, to obtain all of the above results, you need to include only natural churchkhela in your diet. It should not contain thickeners, preservatives, sweeteners or other chemical additives.

Harm of churchkhela and contraindications

When including churchkhela in your diet, it is important to understand that its calorie content can reach 500-700 units per 100 g of product. The components of the dish are often the cause of allergic reactions. Here are a few more points to keep in mind:

  1. Eating churchkhela against a background of obesity and lack of physical activity can cause weight gain.
  2. Even completely natural products are prohibited for diabetes.
  3. Tuberculosis and kidney diseases are also contraindications.
  4. During pregnancy and breastfeeding, it is better to avoid delicacies so as not to provoke an allergy.

Churchkhela can be an excellent natural medicine and an incentive to lift your spirits. You just need to eat it in small quantities and preferably at least every 1-2 days. More frequent use of the product will not bring much benefit to the body, but can provoke unpleasant consequences.

Today, the number of recipes for preparing churchkhela, or, as it is called in some countries, “chuchkhela,” has increased significantly. The following products are now often used as main and auxiliary ingredients:

Secrets of choosing fresh delicacies

Churchkhela is prepared using classical technology during the harvest of ripe grapes; the vitamin product prepared at this time can be easily preserved until the next harvest (year). However, the traditional recipe for sweets has undergone changes over time. The famous dish is now prepared from various types of nuts (almonds, hazelnuts, peanuts), even pumpkin seeds.

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To preserve churchkhela brought from southern countries, you need to purchase only fresh goods, adhering to the selection rules:

  • You cannot buy nut sweets whose top layer is covered with sugar grains. Such a product was prepared in violation of cooking technology.
  • If the dessert contains excess flour and sugar, the shell of the delicacy will be covered with cracks. Such a treat cannot be delivered to your place of residence.
  • Before you buy churchkhela, try it. The consistency of the sweet should not be “rubbery”, and when chewing you will feel the taste of fresh nuts.

If you want to treat your friends and family, you will have to store the churchkhela at home, so when buying, check its quality by bending it with your hands. A quality product has moderate hardness - a soft interior under a dense crust. A free-bending nut stick probably contains extra ingredients.

Violations of manufacturing, drying and transportation technology will lead to the fact that the Georgian treat will begin to dry out or become covered with a layer of mold during transportation.

Factors affecting shelf life

The storage of churchkhela will last longer if it was produced in an industrial environment. At the same time, sugar and various additives (preservatives) were used for production to increase shelf life. If the product is also in a vacuum, long-term storage is guaranteed.

The classic sweet, which was made according to an old Georgian recipe at home, has a shorter shelf life. Everything here will depend on the manufacturing technology of the product, the conditions of its storage and transportation. Homemade churchkhela is made by hand according to a traditional recipe, usually in the autumn. No sugar or starch is added to it, much less chemical preservatives.

It should be remembered that various additives shorten the shelf life of the product. For example, a peeled walnut can maintain quality for only 1 month. This means that the finished product will not be able to remain fresh longer.

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