Georgian Basturma Recipe - Authentic and Flavorful

Georgian Basturma

Georgian Basturma Recipe - Authentic and Flavorful
Region / culture: Georgia | Preparation time: 2 days | Cooking time: 20 minutes | Servings: 4


Georgian Basturma
Georgian Basturma

Georgian Basturma is a traditional dish that originated in Georgia, known for its bold flavors and unique cooking techniques. This recipe features marinated beef skewers cooked over a brazier, resulting in tender and flavorful meat that is perfect for any occasion.


Basturma has been a staple in Georgian cuisine for centuries, with its origins dating back to ancient times. The marinating and skewering of beef was a common practice among Georgian tribes, who used simple ingredients like onions, vinegar, and salt to enhance the flavor of the meat. Over time, this dish evolved into the delicious and aromatic Georgian Basturma that we know and love today.


How to prepare

  1. Cut the beef into small cubes and marinate them with sliced onion, pepper, salt, and vinegar for 2 days.
  2. Thread the cubes tightly onto flat metal skewers.
  3. Place the skewers over a well-heated brazier with charcoals.


  • For a twist on the traditional recipe, try marinating the beef in a mixture of yogurt, garlic, and herbs for a tangy and flavorful alternative.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

To ensure that your Georgian Basturma turns out perfectly, be sure to marinate the beef for at least 2 days to allow the flavors to fully develop. Additionally, threading the meat tightly onto the skewers will help prevent them from falling apart during cooking. Cooking the skewers over a well-heated brazier with charcoals will give the meat a smoky and charred flavor that is characteristic of this dish.

Serving Suggestions

Serve Georgian Basturma with a side of grilled vegetables and a dollop of creamy tzatziki sauce for a complete and delicious meal.

Cooking Techniques

Cook the skewers over a brazier with charcoals for a smoky and charred flavor that is characteristic of Georgian Basturma.

Ingredient Substitutions

If you prefer a milder flavor, you can substitute the beef with chicken or lamb for a different twist on this classic dish.

Make Ahead Tips

You can marinate the beef in advance and store it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days before cooking to save time on the day of preparation.

Presentation Ideas

Serve the skewers on a bed of fluffy rice or couscous, garnished with fresh herbs and a squeeze of lemon for a beautiful and appetizing presentation.

Pairing Recommendations

Pair Georgian Basturma with a glass of Georgian red wine for a perfect complement to the rich and savory flavors of the dish.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat the skewers in the oven or on the stovetop until heated through before serving.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

Calories: 200 per serving


Carbohydrates: 3g per serving


Fats: 8g per serving


Proteins: 25g per serving

Vitamins and minerals

This dish is rich in iron, zinc, and vitamin B12, which are essential for overall health and well-being.


This recipe contains onions and beef, which may be allergens for some individuals.


Georgian Basturma is a protein-rich dish that is low in carbohydrates and calories, making it a healthy and satisfying meal option.


Georgian Basturma is a delicious and flavorful dish that is perfect for any occasion. With its bold flavors and unique cooking techniques, this recipe is sure to impress your family and friends.

How did I get this recipe?

The memory of finding this recipe for the first time is still fresh in my mind. It was a warm summer day, and I was visiting my dear friend Natalia in Tbilisi, Georgia. We spent the morning exploring the local markets, picking out fresh fruits and vegetables, and sampling delicious pastries and cheeses.

As we made our way through the bustling streets, Natalia suddenly stopped in front of a small food stall. The air was filled with the rich aroma of spices and smoked meats, and my mouth watered at the sight of the beautifully marbled cuts of meat hanging from the stall's ceiling.

Natalia explained to me that we were at a traditional Georgian butcher shop, known for their specialty cured meats. She pointed to a dark red slab of meat hanging at the front of the stall and told me that it was basturma, a beloved Georgian delicacy.

I had never heard of basturma before, but I was intrigued by its bold flavor and rich color. Natalia must have seen the curiosity in my eyes because she immediately started chatting with the butcher, asking him about the process of making basturma.

The butcher, a kind and elderly man with a twinkle in his eye, began to explain the intricate steps involved in curing the meat. He told us about the special blend of spices used to season the meat, the careful drying process, and the importance of patience and precision when making basturma.

I was mesmerized by his words, and I knew that I had to learn how to make basturma for myself. With Natalia's help, I convinced the butcher to share his family recipe with me. He smiled and nodded, handing me a piece of paper with the recipe written in beautiful cursive handwriting.

I thanked him profusely, feeling a sense of gratitude and excitement wash over me. I couldn't wait to return home and try my hand at making basturma.

When I got back to my kitchen, I laid out all the ingredients needed to make the Georgian basturma. The recipe called for a high-quality cut of beef, a blend of fragrant spices including coriander, fenugreek, and paprika, and a generous amount of salt to cure the meat.

I carefully followed the butcher's instructions, massaging the spice mixture into the meat and wrapping it tightly in cheesecloth to dry. I placed the meat in a cool, dark place to cure, checking on it regularly and turning it as needed.

Days turned into weeks, and the meat slowly transformed into a beautiful slab of basturma. The smell of the spices filled my kitchen, and I knew that the time had come to finally taste the fruits of my labor.

I sliced a thin piece of basturma and took a tentative bite. The flavors exploded in my mouth, the perfect balance of salty, spicy, and smoky. I closed my eyes and savored the moment, feeling a deep sense of pride and accomplishment.

From that day on, making Georgian basturma became a beloved tradition in my kitchen. I shared the recipe with friends and family, passing down the knowledge and love for this ancient delicacy.

Every time I make basturma, I think back to that warm summer day in Tbilisi, my dear friend Natalia by my side, and the kind butcher who shared his family recipe with me. And I am grateful for the memories and the flavors that continue to bring joy to my heart and my kitchen.


| Beef Recipes | Bouquet Garni Recipes | Georgian Meat Dishes | Georgian Recipes | Onion Recipes | Skewer Recipes | Wine Vinegar Recipes |

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