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  • ::: “Gurza”

    Continuing the theme of Cookery talk about traditional meals will compose favorite pastry dish of Derbend citizens “Gurza”. Generally, variety of meals made of meat and pastry is very wide and explains with the love of Azeri people to pastry meals. It could be baked on pan second courses as well as watery first courses. Being the one of the most popular dishes in northern parts of Azerbaijan “Gurza” could be prepared in two ways: watery and as main course. In Gah-Zagatala region the Northern-West part of Azerbaijan it is called “Girz” and is served as the first course, while “Gurza” is the main course and could be called solemn meal as it is wonderful dish gathering family and friends around in a cold winter evening. And here comes the reason of this meal’s popularity in northern cooler regions of Azerbaijan. But where from comes this strange name and what is this meal consisting of? Gurza is a kind of poisonous snakes spread in some regions of Azerbaijan and may be the shape and the modeling technique of the meal reminds the crawl of snake. Somehow or other, here similarity of this meal with dangerous Gurza snake ends. As to ingredients of “Gurza” the important factor is availability of fresh mutton from which the mince is made. Beside mutton to mince is also added onion, a little bit vinegar, salt and pepper. Prepared mince have to stay for a half an hour in fridge. The pastry is standard with the most part of Azeri pastry meals. It has to be hard, made from flour, egg, water and salt. For the better and easier rolling the pastry should be crumbled well and thoroughly and after left for some time. After starts the main procedure of pastry rolling and cutting. The thickness of the rolled pastry should be nearly 1 mm. The length of cut from its circles should be 5 sm in diameter. Mince is put to the centre of these pastries and they have to be wrapped stitch up, also the lower part must be left open. The wrapped pastry has a wavy pattern and reminds newly born swaddled child. After the procedure of wrapping is finished prepared pastries are thrown to boiling water where they must stay nearly for 20 minutes. When the pastry is soft and meat inside is quite ready “Gurza” is strained through colander and put to a big oval dish. And now is time to decorate small pastries with special food which will also give her delicious taste. First of all, yoghurt with grated garlic should be put over the meal. Also some people sprinkle “Gurza” with cinnamon. But the most favorite are thinly cut roasted onion or roasted mince-meat which is called in Azeri language “giyme”. Such nourishing pastry meal is the wonderful end of hard and cold working day as these funny wrapped babies along with unforgettable taste give special aesthetic delight and look so attractive…

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