A crazy delicious bread made from a soft, buttery dough that's shaped like a boat, stuffed to the brim with melty, tangy cheese and topped with a few runny eggs. Serve it warm, and tear off pieces of the dough from the outside to dip in the center. —Erin McDowell
2 large or 4 small breads
For the dough
4 1/3 cups
(522 g) bread flour
(9 g) instant active dry yeast
(25 g) granulated sugar
(4 g) fine sea salt
(142 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
(242 g) whole milk, warmed to about 100°F
(81 g) warm water
For the filling and finishing
1 1/2 cups
2 1/2 cups
diced fresh mozzarella cheese
egg, beaten with a splash of water
In This Recipe
Make the dough: In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, mix the flour, yeast, sugar, and salt to combine. Add the butter and mix on low speed until the mixture looks crumbly, about 1 minute.
Add the milk and water and mix the dough on low speed for 4 minutes. Raise the speed to medium and mix until the dough is very smooth, 2-3 minutes more.
Transfer the dough to a large, oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let the dough rise for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, until the dough is puffed (it may not fully double in size).
Divide the dough as desired: Cut into two even pieces for larger, more share-able khachapuri, or into four even pieces for smaller, individual khachapuri.
Pat the dough into an oval shape with your hands. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough, maintaining the oval shape, into an oblong oval about 1/3-inch thick.
Pick the dough up from the ends and transfer it to a parchment lined baking sheet. Gently stretch the dough when you transfer it to help elongate the oval a bit.
Crumble the goat cheese evenly over the dough, leaving about 1 inch around the edge on all sides. Sprinkle the mozzarella evenly over the goat cheese.
Working your way around the bread, fold the excess dough up and over the filling to create a little wall and encase it. Gently pinch the ends of the oval to help seal. Cover the breads with a piece of plastic wrap sprayed with nonstick spray, and let the bread rise for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 375° F. Brush the edges of the dough with egg wash.
For small khachapuri, crack an egg on each piece, in the center of the bread. Transfer to the oven and bake until the crust is golden brown, the cheese is melted and lightly golden, and the egg white is set, but the yolk is still runny, 30 to 35 minutes.
For large khachapuri, transfer the breads to the oven and bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Remove the breads from the oven and crack three eggs evenly over the center of each bread. Return to the oven and continue to bake for 25 to 30 minutes more, until the bread is golden, the cheese is melted, and the egg white is set but the yolks are still runny.
Let the khachapuri cool for 5 to 10 minutes before serving warm.
I always carry three kinds of hot sauce in my purse. I have a soft spot for making people their favorite dessert, especially if it's pie. My first cookbook, The Fearless Baker, is out on October 24, 2017.