Recipe for classic Georgian ‘pressed’ chicken with walnut sauce

Serves 6

The 1 cup of parsley called for in the chicken is correct. The original recipe includes two sauces, one made from grated beets, another from walnuts. This version offers only the walnut sauce.


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1 cup walnuts
1 clove garlic
teaspoons ground
coriander, or to taste
1 teaspoon hot paprika
Salt, to taste
2 teaspoons cider vinegar, or more to taste
¾ cup water, or more if needed

1. In a blender, combine the walnuts, garlic, coriander, paprika, salt, and 2 teaspoons of the vinegar.

2. With the motor running, slowly add ¾ cup water, stopping when the sauce is the consistency of thick cream. It should be thinner than mayonnaise but thicker than a rich broth. Taste and add more vinegar or coriander, if you like.


6 pounds chicken drumsticks and thighs
Salt and pepper, to taste
6 tablespoons unsalted
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 scant cup water
1 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped
3 tomatoes

1. Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper.

2. Place a very large skillet — or use 2 — (they will have to hold all the chicken pieces with space around them) over medium-low heat. Add the butter or divide it between the 2 pans.

3. When the butter foams, add the chicken, bone sides down. Cover just the meat with parchment paper. Place a saucepan on the parchment. Fill the saucepan with water. Cook the chicken for 25 minutes. Remove the top pan, taking care not to slosh water into the skillet. Turn the chicken skin sides down, replace the parchment and the top pan. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until the meat is cooked through. Total cooking time is 40 to 45 minutes.

4. Remove the chicken pieces and transfer to a serving dish. Add the garlic and water to the pan juices, increase the heat to high, and cook, stirring, until reduced by two-thirds.

5. Stir in the parsley and remove from the heat. Spoon the sauce over the chicken and garnish with the tomatoes. Sprinkle the tomatoes with salt. Serve the walnut sauce on the side.  Adapted from “Cindy’s Supper Club”