Zhingyalov Hats - Armenia's Favorite Snack
Zhingyalov hats, or jingalov hats ("Bread with herbs" in Armenian) - is a hallmark dish from Nagorno-Karabakh (Republic of Artsakh), and if you ever visit the Stepanakert bustling market, you can taste the real deal made fresh in front of you.
In recent years, the popularity of this Vegan friendly and the Great Lenten appropriate snack, seems to be picking up in the US and elsewhere in the world.
Unleavened dough is rolled out until it becomes paper-thin, then it is filled with a stuffing that consists of 10 to 20 types of diced and oiled wild and cultivated herbs.
One of the most important steps in preparing a good Zhingyalov hats is the greens' composition. Tasteless leaf vegetables and herbs with less pronounced taste make up the base of the stuffing: examples include lettuce, spinach, atriplex, beet greens, chickweed, shepherd's-purse, viola leaves and suchlike plants.
Herbs with distinctive tastes (chervil, urtica, allium), sour (rumex) or spicy (laserpitium) ones are needed in smaller quantities; bitter-tasting greens as taraxacum should be sparse. Additionally the stuffing might contain bryndza and fried onions. For the signature sweet-tart finish, some people also add a handful of pomegranate seeds.
After stuffing, Zhingyalov hats are fried for around 10 minutes on a special griddle called "saj" or "sajin". The finished dish is consumed with beer, yogurt drink “tan”, russian cold soup “Okroshka”, or wine.
Get in touch with us and we will recommend the great places to have an authentic Zhingyalov hats in Armenia. The good wine and local beer will accompany your food in a right way!
To learn more about Armenia's food & drink, please visit our ARMENIAN CUISINE page
Watch some of the cool Zhingyalov hats making videos from our YouTube channel, at the bottom of this post: