What is Khachapuri?

Recently I spent a month living in Russia covering the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Games. Although the experience was incredible, the culinary situation left something to be desired. Russian food…it’s not the best. But what I discovered with just a week left was that I was pretty close to the border with Georgia/Abkhazia – and they have a whole different thing going on.

To best understand what khachapuri is, imagine a big bowl of soup. Now, imagine the bowl is made out of a very heavy bread. Now, imagine the soup is just melted cheese, butter and an egg. That’s it. That’s khachapuri. I guess it’s no surprise that Huffington Post included khachapuri on their list of the world’s ten most fattening foods. But seriously, does that matter? This is an excuse to eat a pound of cheese in warm buttery bread and if made correctly, it even resembles Yoda. What could go wrong?

Khachapuri in all its glory

Khachapuri it is

In case you want to make your own khachapuri, here is a recipe from Saveur:

1 tsp. active dry yeast
¼ tsp. sugar
1 tbsp. olive oil, plus more for greasing
1 ¼ cups flour, plus more for dusting
1 tsp. kosher salt
2 ¼ cups shredded Muenster cheese (14 oz.)
1 cup crumbled feta cheese (6 oz.)
2 eggs
4 tbsp. unsalted butter, cubed

1. Combine yeast, sugar, and ⅔ cup water heated to 115° in a bowl; let stand until foamy, about 10 minutes. Add oil, flour, and salt; mix with a wooden spoon until a soft dough forms. Transfer to a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 4 minutes. Transfer to a lightly greased bowl and cover loosely with plastic wrap; set in a warm place until doubled in size, about 45 minutes.

2. Place a pizza stone on a rack in lower third of oven. Heat oven to 500° for 1 hour. Combine cheeses in a bowl; set aside. Punch down dough and divide in half. On a piece of lightly floured parchment paper, roll half of dough into a 10″ circle about ⅛” thick. Spread a quarter of the cheese mixture over dough, leaving a ½” border. On one side of the circle, tightly roll dough about a third of the way toward the center. Repeat on the opposite end. There should be a 2″-3″ space between the two rolls. Pinch the open ends of the rolls together and twist to seal, making a boat shape; place another quarter of the cheese mixture in the middle; repeat with remaining dough and cheese. Transfer boats on paper to stone; bake until golden brown, 14-16 minutes. Crack 1 egg into the center of each boat. Return to oven until egg white is slightly set, 3-4 minutes. Place 2 tbsp. butter on each bread; serve hot.

Have you eaten this decadent dish? What did you think? Tell us in the comments.

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2 Responses to “What is Khachapuri?”

  1. Alexandra
    April 29, 2014 at 10:25 am #

    I want david!

    • StyleHiClub
      April 30, 2014 at 10:52 pm #

      Thanks Alexandra!