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California Cheese Khachapuri



Khachapuri Dough: – 5 cups all-purpose flour – ½ ounce active dry yeast – 4 teaspoons kosher salt – 2 ½ teaspoons sugar – 2 cups warm water – 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil – 6 tablespoons warm water Cheese Filling: – 18 ounces Real California Toma Provence cheese, rind removed and grated – 6 eggs – Chopped chives, as needed – Extra virgin olive oil, as needed
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To prepare the Khachapuri Dough, combine flour, yeast, salt, sugar, 2 cups warm water and olive oil in a large food processor. Pulse until the dough forms a ball. With motor running, process dough while drizzling in 6 tablespoons warm water, for 1 minute. The dough should be very loose and sticky. Transfer to a large bowl and cover with a towel. Let rise at room temperature for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until doubled in volume.

Place bowl in refrigerator and let rest for 15 minutes or up to 2 hours. Scrape dough out of the bowl onto a lightly floured surface. Pat into a rectangular shape then cut into 6 equal pieces. Gently tuck the corners of each piece of dough underneath to form a ball with a smooth top. Place on a lightly floured sheet and refrigerate for 10 minutes or up to 3 hours.

To prepare the Cheese Filling, combine the California Toma Provence and Toma cheeses and press to form 6 equal balls.

When ready to assemble Khachapuri, preheat pizza oven to 550°F and place pizza stone or upside-down sheet pan in bottom third of oven. On a floured surface, press one ball of Khachapuri Dough into an oval 9 inches long and 7 inches wide. Press one cheese ball into the center of the dough and slightly flatten. Fold the dough up and around the cheese and twist the ends to make a boat shape.

Using a pizza peel or large floured spatula, place into the heated oven. Bake until the cheese is melted and the crust is light golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes. While the Khachapuri is baking, crack one egg into a small dish. Remove Khachapuri from oven and make a shallow well in the center of the cheese. Place the egg into the well and return to the oven. Continue to bake until the egg is set, 6 to 7 minutes. Remove from the oven and brush the crust with extra virgin olive oil. Sprinkle the chives over the cheese and egg.

Chef's Note: Khachapuri is meant to be eaten as a bread and dip, where the edges of the dough are torn and dipped into the yolk and cheese fondue that forms as it bakes.

Per Order: Makes 6 Khachapuri

Recipe developed by Chef Michael Israel, Cheesecake Factory