Travel-Ing.: Tartar Tea and Atscharuli Chatschapuri
While on business travel, you get to go out to eat a lot. The really good part about that is, that you very rarely need to pay for the nice food you get. Okay, if you need to travel in the backwater of a country sometimes food (or at least good food) becomes a challenge.
Last week, I needed to travel to Russia again, but this time I had the opportunity to spend a couple of days in Moscow. Since the former Soviet union encompasses a lot of countrys and cultures, there are a lot of nice different food styles. So during this visit I encountered Usbek and Georgian food.
I really loved the variety of Tea which was offered in the Usbek Restaurants. A whole page of the menu was often reserved for different teas. I settled for “Tatare tea”, a mixture of 50% black and 50% green tea. Obviousely there was no artificial flavour in the tea as we are used to in the west (unless you try to avoid that chemical shit like I do). The Tea was absolutely deliciouse! Notable was the serving style. The Tea was brought to the table, accompanied by small bowls. The waiter poured the Tea into a bowl, then back into the tea pot. This was done three times before he finally served a bowl half full(!) to me. Tea is to be served and consumed hot. It is considered rude to fill the bowl more than about half full.
The food was also very delicious. I especially liked the typical georgian Chatschapuri. A bread with cheese and (if atscharuli style) egg, served as a snack. Below you can find a recipe for such a snack.
For 6 Chatschapuri you will need:
- 500 g Flour
- 25 g yeast (I used granulat)
- 1.5 cups warm water
- 25 g Butter (creamy or melted)
- pinch of Salt
- 700 g curd (as a variety try white cow cheese)
- 6 Eggs
1. Mix flour and yeast, form a small hollow in the middle and add Salt, Water and Butter there. Knead to a dough (consistency like a cookie dough). Put the dough into some foil and let it work for about 1 hour (warm, at room temperature)
2. Knead again, then form 6 balls from the dough, cover them and wait another 20 min.
3. Flaten the balls to a round shape about 1cm thick (0.39 Inch), put 1/6 of the curd onto the middle of each slice (disc? whatever). Fold the sides of the discs up and squeeze two ends up and together until you form a little “boat” (see picture above).
4. Put the “boats” into a 200°C preheated oven (for best results use a Stone oven and wood fire ;)) and bake for 15 min. Take the boats out and crack an egg onto each (in the middle obviousely), then back into the oven for another 6 minutes (this varies a little, just take a look until the egg looks nice).
This is a nice snack!