How to make Khachapuri like a Georgian
This afternoon I had the pleasure of participating in a Georgian cooking workshop hosted by the Young Ambassadors of Georgia in Philadelphia PA. Within the last 10 years, this Greater North East neighborhood, that used to be referred to as little Russia, has seen a greater inflow of other post-soviet era nations. Many wonderful ethnic restaurants and groceries have popped-up over the years revitalizing the community and cultural landscape of this once predominantly Russian neighborhood. Including several
One such restaurant is The Georgian Bakery and Cafe .
“Georgian Bakery & Café started from a love of food and a passion to share the Georgian culture with those around us. Family-owned and operated, our restaurant will make you feel right at home with a Georgian’s love for guests and our hospitality. Our desire to spread Georgian tradition has brought the Northeast Philadelphia community closer together.”(georgianbakerycafe.com)
Today with the Young Ambassadors of Georgia, the Bakery and Cafe was gracious enough to take us into their Kitchen and show us how to make the famous Georgian Cheese-Boat, Kachapuri. Khachapuri has been made in the country since ancient times. Although our host, Tato, was not familiar with its exact origin, he mentioned that its possible that Khachapuri could have originated in Turkey’s Trabzon region, which used to be part of Georgia. Tato, explained that Khachapuri is a very regional dish and each of the 7 regions of Georgia have their unique variations (Future research project.) Today we were making the Acharuli Khachapuri (sunny side egg on top) from the Adjara region of Georgia.
The dough is a
You can buy a huge freshly bakes
Traditionally, Acharuli Khachapuri filling includes Georgian cheeses,
Assembly and Baking
Approximately 500 grams of dough is rolled out into a circle and filled with one and a half cups of cheese mixture. Two ends are brought together and folded to create the boat shape. Check out the video of the Chef assembling Khachapuri below.
*Note* The above method works well for a professional convection oven. The recipe that follows makes a few modifications to
Eating this the best part obviously. At first, minding our manners, we all reached for the knife and fork. Thankfully our Young Ambassadors were on hand to show us the way. The traditional way to eat Acharuli Khahapuri is to first mix the egg and cheese in the center of the boats with a fork. Next, starting from the outside corner, tare a piece by hand and dip into creamy, buttery. cheesy, eggy, filling. Check out my mom eating her Acharuli Khahapuri.
“You don’t need a silver fork to eat good food.” -Paul Prudhomme
But the experience is not complete without a home made Pinot Noir Rose. Although not well known in the United States, in Eastern Europe, Georgians are famous for their wines. Grapes grown in the warm climate of Georgia produce fruity and robust wines, rich with red and black fruit aromas that will delight a novice and expert wine lover alike.
I would like to offer my sincere gratitude to the hard working team of Georgian Bakery and Cafe, Tato our gracious host and the rest of the passionate and engaging youths of the Young Ambassadors of Georgia program. Thank you for putting this together and sharing your food, wine, culture and friendship with the Frugal Foodist.
- 1 2/3 Cup All Purpose Flour
- 1 Tbsp Olive Oil plus more for greasing and brushing
- 1.5 tsp Kosher Salt
- 1 tsp Active Dry Yeast
- 1/4 tsp Sugar
- 3 Cups Grated Mozzarella Cheese 12oz
- 1 1/4 Cups Crumbled Feta Cheese 8oz
- 2 each Eggs
- 2 Tbsp Unsalted Butter, grated
- 2 Each Eggs
- 6 Tbsp Butter
To make the dough
Add the flour, yeast, salt, sugar, olive oil and 2/3 cup of warm water (90F) to a standing mixer fitted with a bread hook attachment. Mix on low until ingredients are combined and the mixture resembles like a shaggy mess.
Increase mixer speed to medium and knead the dough for 6 minutes. The dough should be soft and slightly sticky. Allow rising in a warm place for one hour or until doubled in size.
In the meantime preheat your oven to 500F.
To make the filling
Combine cheeses with eggs and grated butter, mix thoroughly and set aside in the refrigerator until ready for use.
Divide the dough in half. Dust your work surface and rolling pin with a little flour and roll each piece into a 12 inch round.
Divide the cheese mixture equally and evenly spread over the dough all the way out to the edge leaving about 1/4 inch seam.
Imagine your dough divided into quadrants. First, bring the top two sections together pinching them closed. Next bring the bottom two parts together, pinching them closed. There should be ample open space in the middle and your bread should resemble the shape of a rowboat. Then fold in the middle edges slightly, about 1 inch, to create a barrier for the cheese.
Move the cheese boats to a sheet tray, brush with a little olive oil or egg-wash and bake for 15 minutes.
After 15 minutes remove open the oven and carefully crack open one egg over the cheese filling. Give the sheet tray a little shake to help the egg settle. Add 3 Tbsp of butter around the egg and place back into the oven. Bake for an additional 5 minutes.