You wait for the promised for three years, a Russian proverb says, and here – even earlier than three years after – are some nice Georgian cheese pies, just as promised! Not without my tweak of course, just cannot resist the urge to change something in a recipe. So here we go on our cheese pie journey!
First pie – the most famous Georgian cheese pie called khachapuri that’s been almost haunting this blog from the very start. Just look at a real collection of them at this page. Probably that’s why I just had to make some changes to this pie (just don’t tell any Georgians I did it, it’s edging on blasphemy…).
Two years ago – Some Desserts from Leftovers
Khachapuri with Suluguni adapted and translated for you from eda.ru will make about 6 piece pile of flat cheese pies with thin dough and a similarly thin layer of filling. My remarks are in italics. ATTENTION: the dough requires 3 hours to rise AND you’ll get loads of pies!
- 1 kg all purpose flour
- 150 g butter
- 2 eggs – reserve just a bit of an egg yolk for the glaze
- 11 g dried yeast – I used active dried yeast
- 700 ml 2.5% fat milk
- 1 Tbs sugar
- 2 Tbs milk
- 5 g salt
- 1 kg suluguni cheese – I mixed in some white brined cheese + added leftover cooked rice and herbes de Provence
- 1 jar of sour cream (20% fat smetana) – I actually used prostokvasha or yogurt-like soured milk, some of which I also added to the filling
The dough: Dissolve yeast in 2 Tbs milk and 1 Tbs sugar. Sift flour on a large flat dish, make a well in the centre, crack 1 egg in the well and pour the yeast mixture, butter and milk. Knead the dough till it stops sticking to your hands. Place in a warm place to rise for 3 hours.
The filling: Coarsely grate the cheese. Here I added some salty brined cheese + leftover cooked rice and herbs, and as the mixture was a bit dry I poured in some soured milk. It’s not the first time I add cooked rice to a Caucasian cheese pie, see also Ualibakh, Traditional Caucasian Fresh Cheese Pie from Ossetia
Assemble the pie: Cut a piece of dough of about 250 g and roll it out in a circle. The dough circle should not be thicker than 0.5 cm. Place cheese in the centre of the circle – around 250 g of filling per 250 g of dough. Gather the edges of the dough together and pinch thoroughly, making sure the filling remains in the centre. Flop the pie over and roll out into a thin flat circle. Make a small hole in the centre so that the air escapes and the pie doesn’t puff while baking. Brush the pie with a mixture of egg yolk and sour cream. Sprinkle some grated suluguni on top (I did not). Repeat with the rest of the dough.
Baking: Transfer the pies on a floured baking sheet and bake in a preheated 210 ‘C oven for 6-7 minutes. Even though my pies were thin, they required more time, about twice as much + I baked the pie on the top shelf for some minutes.
Remarks: Use your leftover rice for this recipe or make it purely cheese pie. The recipe results in a LOT of pies, so you might want to half the ingredients. And although I made just a half of the dough recipe, I managed to make three large pies. And a three-pie pile that was!
Result: The dough is thin although made with yeast – just like it should be and the pie is great! Just get the right cheese and the result will be soooo nice.
The second pie of this post is a easy no-crust cheese & egg pie from Adjara region in Georgia. No rice here, don’t worry : )
You’re supposed to make this crustless pie with the traditional fresh white cheese from the Imereti region in Georgia but fell free to use the fresh white cow’s milk cheese you can find at the market. Or you can even make yours if you dare! I found this really great food & travel blog where you can learn how: foodperestroika.com
Borano from Adjara region in Georgia adapted and translated for you from eda.ru will make a cheesy omelette-like pie with no much effort. My remarks are in italics.
- 4 eggs
- 1.5 cups coarsely grated Imeretian cheese – I used Adygea cheese + suluguni + chopped spring onions + pepper + Provence mix
- 50 g 3.5% fat milk – I used milk with less fat
- 1.5 Tbs butter
- salt, to taste
- vegetable oil, to taste – I used olive oil
Beat the eggs thoroughly in a bowl. Coarsely grate the cheese and add it to the eggs, mix and season with salt (optional, judge by your cheese). Pour in the milk and the oil and mix well. Warm a thick-bottom + high border pan and melt butter in this pan. Pour the pie mixture in the pan and cover with a lid (I used foil). Bake the pie for 30-40 minutes in a preheated 140-160 ‘C oven. Ten minutes before the pie is ready remove the lid for a pretty golden crust. I also turned on the grill mode and baked the pie on the top shelf for several minutes.
Result: Definitely nicer than a fried omelette (I have something against the taste of fried eggs), very nutritious. Not rubbery by the way! And the chopped green onions were a good addition I think. Although a Georgian pie would probably have some coriander instead .)
Good luck with your own versions of Georgian pies!