Looking for something fun to do this weekend? How about making a crusty bread canoe filled with bubbling cheese and a runny egg?
Still with me? I hope so. This is a traditional dish from the country of Georgia, known as acharuli khachapuri. The “canoe” part is essentially pizza dough, and the filling is a mixture of feta and muenster (a nice combo of melty, creamy and salty). Once it has baked most of the way, you crack an egg into the middle of the boat, and continue baking until it’s as set as you want it to be (ideally, the yolk will be nice and runny). If you click into the recipe you’ll see illustrations of the process, so you know exactly how it comes together. For good measure, it’s traditional to toss a few cubes of butter into the middle before serving (optional, but that low cholesterol ship has already sailed, so consider it).
As for serving, the most fun way to eat it is to put the boat on a platter while it’s still hot and tear into it with your fingers, dipping the hunks of bread into the molten center. If that sounds too hot or messy (it can be both), you can always cut it crosswise into pieces and serve on individual plates. Either way (though especially the first way), this has got to be in the running for the pantheon of cold weather comfort foods. It’s also quite satisfying to make, fun for kids (if you’ve got any of those lying around), and generally a delight.
So, if you’ve got a few spare hours this weekend, think about taking this boat for a spin. Wherever it takes you, enjoy the weekend, and see you Tuesday.
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