Glyko karithi

Glyko karithi

Green walnut preserve

By
From
The Complete Middle Eastern Cookbook
Photographer
Alan Benson

The first requirement for this preserve is a walnut tree. Though the preparation is lengthy, the preserve is well worth trying, as it is superb. Incidentally, a similar preserve, but flavoured with cardamom, is made in Iran, where it is called morabaye gerdu.

The walnuts must be picked very early in the summer when the green fruit are not yet full size and the inner shell is still soft. Test a nut by pricking it deeply in several places with a darning needle, paying particular attention to the long crease on one side; this indicates the join of the forming shell and is the part of the shell that hardens first. If there is no hint of resistance, cut the nut in half to check again. You will see the thick outer green covering progressing to white. The actual nut meat should be apparent — if it is clear and gelatinous, then the nuts are ready for the preserving pan. If the nut meat is not visible, try again in a few days.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
2kg green walnuts, (about 50 nuts)
1/2 cup slaked lime
1.32kg sugar
1 lemon, thinly rinded
1 large piece cinnamon bark
3 cloves
60ml lemon juice
90g honey

Method

  1. It is advisable to wear rubber gloves when preparing the walnuts as they contain iodine, which stains the hands black — a stain that is very stubborn to remove, though it does wear off eventually.
  2. Peel the walnuts thinly with a sharp knife, placing them in a bowl. Cover with cold water and leave for 8 days, changing the water daily.
  3. Put the slaked lime in 500 ml water and stir to dissolve. Add the drained walnuts and sufficient cold water to cover. Stir, then leave for 4 hours.
  4. Drain the walnuts and rinse well, changing the water several times. Tip the walnuts into a colander and run cold water through them to remove all traces of lime. This treatment firms the outer covering on the nuts; otherwise they will disintegrate during cooking.
  5. Place the walnuts in a preserving pan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil and leave to boil gently, uncovered, for 1–1½ hours, or until tender. Test with a needle, as described in the recipe introduction.
  6. Drain the walnuts. Wearing rubber gloves for protection, pierce each walnut in several places so that the syrup can penetrate into them.
  7. Layer the walnuts in a clean preserving pan, sprinkling 220 g of the sugar over each layer. Cover with water and leave for 2 hours, so the sugar can dissolve slowly.
  8. Add the lemon rind, cinnamon and cloves to the pan. Heat gently, shaking the pan to help dissolve the remaining sugar crystals. Bring to the boil, then add the lemon juice and allow to boil for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat, cover and leave for another 24 hours.
  9. Add the honey to the pan and return to the boil. Allow to boil over medium heat for 10 minutes without stirring. Skim when necessary. When the syrup is very thick — the consistency of honey when a little is cooled on a cold saucer — the preserve is ready.
  10. Remove the lemon rind, cinnamon and cloves. Ladle into hot sterilised jars and leave until cold before sealing. Store at room temperature.
Tags:
The Complete Middle Eastern Cookbook
Tess
Mallos
Middle Eastern
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