I wasn’t planning to post this recipe this week, but here I am, posting away! Sometimes, when you make something so good, you need to get it out there for the world to see, and that’s just what I’m doing. In this case, that dish is a super easy shortcut version of khachapuri, a popular Georgian dish.
Khachapuri is a combination of three of my favorite things: dough, cheese, and eggs. More specifically, it’s kind of a football-shaped dough boat filled with cheese, with a beautiful sunny side up egg on top. I was introduced to this glorious meal in 2002 when I spent the summer in Yerevan, Armenia. Wow, that was a long time ago! Anyway, since we frequently went out for dinner, and khachapuri was on the menu at practically every restaurant, I ate it quite a bit. How could you read a menu and NOT order that? Come on. It’s a good thing I ate so many khachapuri while I was there, because I had an awfully hard time finding them once I got home. It turns out that there isn’t a lot of (or possibly ANY) Georgian food in the US, or at least not in Boston. My aunt made them for me on Mother’s Day (best Mother’s Day ever, btw), and it recently occurred to me that I could make them myself.
Okay, but here’s the thing: I don’t make my own dough. I make a lot of things myself, but not dough. I don’t have time to get the Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer out of the cabinet, let alone use it (except for marshmallow making, which is a different story). So, if I was going to make khachapuri, I would need a shortcut. Since I can buy my own pizza dough, why can’t I just use that? Answer: I can. Now I just need cheese and eggs. I went to the Armenian store and bought an absurd amount of baneer Lori, or Lori Cheese, which is what they use to make khachapuri in Armenia. It’s a creamy, salty, sharp cow’s milk cheese that I can’t get enough of, which is probably why I love this dish so much. I always have eggs, so basically, I was ready to roll.
I bought a bag of pizza dough at Trader Joe’s, and divided it in half. I rolled it out into about a 12 inch round. I rolled up the edges and shaped it into a football. I shredded a TON of cheese (maybe 2-3 cups?), and spread half of it over the inside of my football boat. Then, I baked it. Once the cheese got bubbly, I cracked an egg on top, and cooked it until the white was basically cooked through. That’s it. The rolling and cooking process, in total, took about 20-25 minutes. Not bad. I ate it with some greens on the side, and it was basically the perfect meal. The servings were huge, and I suspect you could easily divide the dough into 4 pieces to make smaller khachapuri, if you’d like.
So that’s it, friends. Check out the recipe below, and let me know what you think (or if you’ve come up with any other khachapuri-hacks). Tag me in @whitecoatpinkapron on Instagram!
- 1 lb premade pizza dough. I recommend using dough in a bag, and not in a tube
- About 2 to 2-1/2 cups of shredded Lori cheese, which you can buy from an Armenian grocery store. If you can't get Lori cheese, you can substitute a mixture of about ¾ shredded mozzarella or jack, and ¼ crumbled feta
- 2 eggs
- Pizza stone
- Rolling pin
- Large spatula or cutting board for transferring dough to the oven
- Flour (about 1 cup) for rolling the dough
- Place a pizza stone in the oven. Preheat the oven and stone to 450 degrees for at least 30-45 minutes.
- Divide the dough into two pieces. Flour the counter, and roll one piece of the dough out to about 12 inch diameter.
- Roll two sides up to oppose each other, creating a football shape with a large well in the center. Pinch the edges on either side together. Repeat with the other piece of dough.
- Divide the cheese evenly between the two pieces of dough, filling the centers of each.
- Crack each egg into its own small bowl. Set aside.
- Using a large spatula or cutting board, carefully transfer each piece of dough directly onto the pizza stone.
- Bake for about 12-13 minutes, until the dough browns and the cheese becomes bubbly. Make a small well in the cheese, and carefully pour one egg into the well. Repeat with the other piece of dough.
- Bake for another 2-4 minutes, until the white is almost completely set.
- Remove from the oven. Serve, preferably with a crisp, green salad with a light vinaigrette.