Utsho-suneli: what kind of seasoning is it, what it consists of, what it smells like, what it looks like and where to add it

In this article we will tell you about blue fenugreek, also known as the Georgian seasoning utskho-suneli. We often use it in our sauces, so we decided to tell you about it.

What is utskho-suneli

Utskho seasoning, translated from Georgian, means something “alien, alien.” And suneli is something “fragrant, pleasantly smelling, spicy.”

So it turns out that utskho-suneli is translated as “foreign seasoning.” It consists of a mixture of dried and then ground flowers, seeds and pods of blue fenugreek.

It grows throughout the east, China, India, as well as Asia, South-Eastern Europe, and of course the Caucasus. And Trigonella caerulea is blue fenugreek, one of the main spices. In Georgia it grows in its northern part covered with mountains.

What does it look like

Fenugreek blue

Blue fenugreek has flowers of the same color as its name. Its leaves are quite long, narrow and jagged, trifoliate, like a chicken’s foot.
As for the spice itself khmeli-suneli, its color ranges from grayish to sandy. It all depends on which part of the plant is more present in the composition.

Taste and smell

The seasoning immediately smells like hay, fallen leaves and nuts, but at the same time the smell is not strong. When added to hot dishes, its mushroom flavor is revealed.
Khmeli-suneli, the spice is not spicy, not bitter, has a slightly neutral taste. All these qualities well emphasize the taste of almost any dish.

Composition and calorie content

As we have already written,the composition of the Utskho-Suneli seasoning includes blue fenugreek. More precisely, its inflorescences, seeds and pods. Depending on the manufacturer, there may be more or less of something.

Grinded stems can also be added to add weight.

Nutritional value per 100 grams
Squirrels 18 gr
Fats 6.4 gr
Carbohydrates 33 gr
Energy value 23 Kcal
Also, the Utskho-Suneli spice is rich in calcium, zinc, phosphorus and magnesium. In addition, it contains vitamins A, B, C, P and essential oils. This makes it not only tasty, but also healthy.

Useful properties and contraindications

Utskho-suneli, like any spice, increases appetite. Has a positive effect on the functioning of the gastrointestinal tract. Improves the appearance of nails, hair and skin, helps bone tissue. It is a diuretic and helps the genitourinary system.

It is even believed that the spice affects breast growth. As for contraindications and possible harm, it should be used with caution during breastfeeding.

The same applies to the period of pregnancy. You may also be allergic to the spice, but everything is individual, so you should consult your doctor.

You can consume no more than 100 grams of Utskho-Suneli per day per person weighing 70-90 kilograms.

The seasoning helps the male body produce testosterone. Also acts as an aphrodisiac. It is useful for children as well as for adults. In general, it strengthens the body, especially in the cold season.

What to replace

Fenugreek seeds (fenugreek) can replace blue fenugreek seeds. But they have a more bitter taste and often unscrupulous traders mix them.
It also replaces utskho-suneli, but not one hundred percent, khmeli-suneli. Although this seasoning has a more pronounced taste and aroma.

What spices does it go with?

Ground utskho-suneli goes perfectly with ground black pepper and bay leaf. Garlic, soy sauce, honey, if we consider them spices, also go well together.
Especially if you make a marinade out of them. Coriander, nutmeg, cumin, rosemary and savory, in general, almost all popular spices are in harmony with utskho. a>

What dishes should I add it to?

Utskho-suneli is added to the famous Georgian sauces satsivi and satsebeli, sometimes added to tkemali. Adjika from plums is often prepared with this seasoning.

It is used in baked goods, fish, meat, and vegetables. It is used to marinate shish kebab, cook cheese, and bake vegetables. They are added to soups and khinkali, as well as various meat sauces.

Utskho-suneli is used in most famous Georgian dishes. Pkhali, lobio, chicken tapaka, kuchmachi and ajapsandal, this is just a small part of them. Its application is widespread and is even used as a shell for basturma.

It can also be added to our usual dishes: dumplings, fried chicken, potatoes with meat. Adding seasoning to belyashi, pasties and goulash will make it much more aromatic and tastier. In general, wherever you add ground pepper, feel free to add blue fenugreek.

Difference from Khmeli-Suneli

Ucho and hops-suneli

The main difference between these seasonings is that utskho-suneli is part of hop-suneli. As well as cilantro, parsley, saffron, mint and many other components.

And the spice utskho, as we wrote, is just crushed blue fenugreek. The aroma of utskho-suneli and hops-suneli are similar, but of course the composition of the second is much more aromatic. The color of the hops is also a darker spice.

How to make utskho-suneli at home

Of course, grinding fenugreek yourself is not an easy task, but there are several ways to make the process easier.

  • All elements of the plant must be well dried. 
  • Blue fenugreek seeds can be heated in a dry frying pan. This will give them fragility and reveal the aroma more strongly.
  • Add a little salt to the mortar for grinding along with the seeds, leaves and inflorescences. It will serve as an abrasive for grinding.
  • The simplest thing is to use a coffee grinder or a powerful chopper.

You can buy blue fenugreek seeds online or order them from seed sellers. Well, how to grow this plant is a completely different conversation.

Where to buy and how to store

Utskho-suneli can be bought in large hypermarkets and markets. Of course, at local bazaars there is a risk of buying a fake or a very diluted product.

To do this, look at the quality of the seasoning; it should not be ground into dust. Small flecks of blue fenugreek should be visible. They are about the size of a grain of sand, coarse grinding is also not very good.

Of course, you can always order the spice in the online store. But you can buy the most delicious and aromatic seasoning in the markets of Sochi and Adler, if we talk about Russia.

It is better to store in a tightly closed container, preventing the nutty smell from dissipating. This will also help the spices not to gain excess moisture.


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