Last month I mentioned that I really wanted to try khachapuri—Adjarian style, in particular—which is the traditional Georgian cheese bread. I’m pleased to tell you that I made it down to Brooklyn and my wish came true. The bread was truly delicious and I can’t wait to eat it again!
My two friends, Anne and Jen, traveled to BK with me—a straight shot on the N train to Kings Highway—and we met their friend Aleksey, who knows the neighborhood and speaks Russian. We planned to stop first at Brick Oven Bread, then walk a mile or so to Cafe Avat, make a stop in at Russian grocery Cherry Hill Market, and end our trip at Baku Bakery. Spoiler: Baku Bakery was closed, so I’ll have to go back.
When we got to Brick Oven Bread, we knew we wanted to get khachapuri, and settled on splitting among the four of us one Adjarian khachapuri. Jen also ordered a Mengrel khachapuri to take home, which was a flat circular bread with cheese both inside and out, and is placed in a pizza box. She said it was delicious the day after, too.
Anyway, our bread came out and it was super gorgeous.
It arrived piping hot with a knob of butter and a raw egg in the center. Aleksey stirred the egg and butter together with two forks, which eventually created something like a creamy scrambled egg.
We tore or cut off (it was quite hot to the touch) fluffy pieces from around the edge and dipped it into the egg and butter mixture.
The tangy cheese inside (a mix of mozzarella and feta, since the traditional sulguni is not available in this country, probably because it’s young and raw) added another great flavor to the mix and I loved the whole thing. I do believe I could eat one of these myself on a very hungry day (which is most days).
We drank a bright green tarragon soda with the bread, Zedazeni brand. The bakery owner sung its praises. Jen likened it to Jones Soda. Aleksey warned us that it would be very sweet, though I found I liked it. The color was amazing—this is not the color of the bottle, but of the soda itself. It didn’t really taste like what I consider tarragon to taste like, but that was probably because it was so sweet. It’s very popular in the Caucases, Russia, Ukraine, and parts of Central Asia.
This was a great way to start our visit to Brooklyn. More on Cafe Avat and Cherry Hill Market in a later post. Many, many thanks to Aleksey for being our guide and giving his time to our adventure!
Brick Oven Bread, 230 Kings Highway, Brooklyn, NY 11223, (718) 759-6250