From time immemorial, bread in Georgia was prepared as follows: it was fried in a clay ketsi and baked in a special spherical oven, similar to a well – a tandoor. Yes, in the same as many peoples of Asia. In Georgian, the name of such a furnace sounds like “tone” or “tone”. The oven itself is dug into the ground, and the walls are lined with clay bricks, on which some types of bread are baked in an upright position. And so that the bread is better attached to the steep walls, bakers “feed” the oven with salt – sprinkle with salt water. At the bottom of the “well” there is a fire made of firewood, which today many owners replace with gas. And no one has canceled the wood-burning ovens of the usual format for baking weighty pies for Europeans.
If in Georgia tonne is not a luxury, but an obligatory attribute of bakeries, establishments, and even private houses, then in Moscow, bread makers with a horizontal ceramic hearth are often used to bake national types of bread.
One of the most important types of Georgian bread – yeast shotis puri in the shape of a canoe, repeating the bend of the walls of the tone… It is flat and long, soft on the inside and crispy on the outside. And in the context – with large pores, like a ciabatta. Finding a real shoti in Moscow is as difficult as finding the oven itself in which it should be baked. To give the dough piece a shape, bakers use a pad “foot” stuffed with cotton wool, which is used to mold the future shoti to the oven walls, heated to 400 degrees.
It is believed that the shoti acquired its finished form, meeting the needs of the ancient warriors in campaigns: thanks to the elongated shape of the boat, it cools down quickly, remains soft for several days and is comfortable to eat with one hand… Shoti bread is often called Georgian lavash, but let’s be honest: this is not lavash at all, not a flat unleavened pancake, but bread.
You can try shoti puri in Megobari 90 rubles apiece.
Megobari address: Maroseyka, 15
In January last year, khachapuri was awarded the status of an intangible cultural heritage of Georgia. But we loved him much earlier!
The concept “khachapuri” is formed from two Georgian words and literally translates as “curd bread”. Khachapuri can be open, closed, of various shapes, but always with cheese: young or matured. They are cooked in a pan or in the oven – it depends on the dough. The types of bread and its distinctive features are tied to the regions of the country.
So, Imeretian khachapuri or imeruli – a round cheese pie made from thin yeast dough. Looks like him Megrelianbut with a lot of cheese on top. Gurian khachapuri crescent-shaped stuffed with boiled egg and cheese reminiscent of a closed calzone pizza. In Guria, it is baked for Christmas and is also called “Christmas cake”. Puff pastry with cheese filling is baked khachapuri penovani in the form of a square envelope.
Gurian khachapuri “Kazbek”
And, of course, Adjarian or Adjaruli – khachapuri “boat” with cheese, butter and egg yolk in the middle. It is believed that it comes from the Lazi people, who were sailors, Adjarian khachapuri – their peculiar idea of the boat, the sea and the sun.
All of the above-mentioned khachapuri are found in restaurant nature with different modifications of fillings: bakers add vegetables, mushrooms, meat and beans, experiment with sizes and even twist khachapuri on a spit. For example, in Georgian restaurant “Eggplant” you can order a giant Adjarian khachapuri “Titanic” (1250 rubles) with three yolks. For an impressive assortment of pastries, you can go to one of the restaurants chain “Khachapuri” – here you can try all their types.
Eggplant address: Kutuzovsky prospect, 57, ow. 3, TC “Oceania”, 4th floor
Khachapuri address: Ukrainian Boulevard, 7
Mchadi / Chvishtari
Mchadi – lean cakes made from cornmeal and water. Add Imeretian cheese to mchadi and you get chvishtari – corn tortilla with cheese. Variants with cilantro, onions and parsley can also be found. Traditionally mchadi is fried in earthenware Georgian dishes – ketsi… But the option of cooking in a cast-iron pan is no worse. According to the ancient Georgian custom, mothers, sending their children on a long journey, cooked corn cakes for children with the print of their hand “dedis heli” – the mother’s hand.
Mchadi “Pirosmani Estate”
Kazbek’s address: st. 1905, 2
If you thought you saw Italian lasagna in a Georgian restaurant, most likely it was achma dish. Baked layers of dough with cheese native to Adjara, a region in the far southwest of Georgia. Sometimes achma is referred to as a variety of khachapuri: the same dough and cheese. Before “assembling” the dough is lightly boiled, and then – soaked in butter… Puff bread is prepared immediately with large baking sheets, since reheating the achma does not in the least impair the taste.
It is customary to serve yogurt with a bite to the achma. This is done in restaurant chain “Jonjoli”, where a portion of homemade achma costs 290 rubles. In Georgian eateries “Wai me” prepare a version of achma with suluguni and turkey ham (160 rubles per 200 g), and in “Khachapuria” – also with spinach (460 rubles).
Jonjoli’s address: st. Pyatnitskaya, 29
Wai Me’s address: st. Myasnitskaya, 11
Khachapuria’s address: st. Povarskaya, 8/1
Kubdari is a meat pie from the mountainous region of Svaneti. Georgian pies are also included in the concept of “puri”. Hearty and typical mountain food. For the filling, take coarsely chopped beef, lamb or pork, interior fat for juiciness, onions, herbs and local spices, including powerful Svan salt. And the dough is yeast-leavened, elastic and durable to withstand the abundant meat filling. Because of the similar shape, sometimes kubdari is called “Svanetian khachapuri”, although there is no cheese in it.
Kubdari with lamb ChaCha on Dezhneva st.
Khachapuria’s address: st. Malaya Bronnaya, 4, building 1
ChaCha address: pr-d Dezhneva, 13
Ojakhuri’s address: st. Sadovaya-Chernogryazskaya, 22, bldg. 1
Lobiani is a closed pie with a spicy filling, the name of which is associated with a traditional Georgian appetizer made of beans – lobio (from load – “beans”). The filling contains boiled beans and spices, adjika, onions and herbs. And the dough is kneaded on yogurt. Lobiani accepted to bake in Georgia on the day of St. Barbara – an important winter holiday Barbaroba December 17… Because, according to legend, Saint Barbara fed the needy and the hungry with bread and beans. And during fasting, this hearty pie is an indispensable item in the diet of those who are fasting. But in general, you can eat it all year round. A popular variation on the bean pie is lobiani rachuli with bacon.
Why not try lobiani in the restaurant of the same name not far from Danilovsky market? In “Lobiani” bean pie is given for 390 rubles. AND in the first Georgian cookery Kulinari – Lobiani on butter dough will cost 360 rubles. You can even order delivery from the one on Kutuzovsky Prospekt, 57 if you live within a 2 km radius of the Oceania shopping and entertainment center.
Lobiani’s address: st. Lyusinovskaya, 53
Kulinari address: Michurinsky pr., 7
And as a dessert, we will tell you about sweet bread. Nazuki is a landmark of the Georgian city of Surami. During the season, the hostesses of this settlement go out on the road to lure travelers with the aromas of sweet pastries – nazuki bread. Nazuki is based on flour, water, eggs and yeast. The rest of the ingredients are the choice and secret of every housewife: ghee, sugar, raisins, cinnamon, vanilla, cloves and other spices… Nazuki are baked on the walls in a tone and smeared with an egg and sugar water for shine. It is the shiny brown crust and aroma that will not confuse it with regular puri.
We were unable to find bakeries and restaurants in Moscow where nazuki are baked. Perhaps no one brought this secret from Surami to the capital. But if you know where to buy it, write to us!