Khachapuri Adjaruli (Georgian Cheese Bread Boat)

Khachapuri Adjaruli (Georgian Cheese Bread Boat)

There are many different styles of khachapuri, the signature stuffed cheese bread of Georgia, but most are made by wrapping a pile of cheese in a round of dough, then baking until the cheese is molten. The most famous khachapuri is from Adjara, a region of Georgia on the Black Sea. It’s an open-faced, boat-shaped loaf that’s often served with an egg yolk and a slice of butter to stir in at the table. Traditionally, tangy imeruli and sulguni cheeses are used, but they are difficult to find in the U.S. This recipe, which is adapted from “Georgian Khachapuri and Filled Breads” by Carla Capalbo (Pallas Athene Publishers, 2018), uses a blend of mozzarella, feta and goat cheese.
  • Total:
  • Serves: 2 persons



  1. Step 1

    Make the dough (but if you're using store-bought, proceed to Step 2): In a small saucepan over low, heat 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons/150 milliliters water until hot but not simmering. Turn off heat. In a large bowl, with your hands or a wooden spoon, stir together flour, sugar, yeast and salt. Check the temperature of reserved, warmed water; it should be warm to the touch, between 105 and 110 degrees. Add it to the flour mixture and, with your hands, knead mixture into a smooth dough, about 5 minutes.
  2. Step 2

    Pour olive oil into a medium bowl. Holding dough with one hand, use it to coat the inside of the bowl with the oil. Set the dough in the bowl, oiled portion facing up. Cover bowl with a damp cloth or plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until it doubled in volume, about 2 hours.
  3. Step 3

    Heat oven to 450 degrees (or 425, if using a convection oven). Line a half sheet tray with parchment paper; set aside. On a lightly floured surface, stretch and roll dough into a circle, 1/4-inch thick, 10 to 12 inches across. Brush off excess flour, then lay the dough on the sheet tray. Using your fingers, roll, press and pinch two opposite sides of the circle a few inches into the center, building sides up, then press and pinch the narrow ends together to form two points. Continue to pinch and press the sides to create a raised rim and form the dough into an oval boat with an eye-like shape. Let rest in a warm place while you prepare the filling.
  4. Step 4

    In a medium bowl, combine mozzarella, goat cheese and feta with 3 tablespoons water. Stir with a fork until the mixture is thoroughly blended. Scrape the cheese mixture into the center of the dough boat, spreading it into an even layer.
  5. Step 5

    Bake khachapuri until the crust begins to brown and the cheese is melted, about 15 minutes. Remove pan from oven, leaving oven on. Brush sides of khachapuri generously with melted butter. Return khachapuri to the oven for an additional 5 minutes until the crust is extra crisp and the cheese just starts to brown around the edges.
  6. Step 6

    Using a spoon, make a shallow, 2-inch-wide well in the center of the cheese. Add the egg yolk and cold butter (if using), and serve immediately. To serve, hold down one pointed end of the hot khachapuri with a fork; using another fork, quickly stir the egg and butter (if using) into the cheese mixture until it’s smooth and stretchy. Rip pieces of the bread boat off to dip in the cheese while it’s still hot.