Chebureki maintains an important place in the Crimean Tartar area as a national dish. While these deep-fried savory turnovers are usually filled with meat, this vegetarian version takes advantage of the delicious Georgian cheese options.
Ingredients for Cheese-Filled Chebureki
- neutral - flavored oil for deep frying
For the dough:
- 3½ cups + 1 tablespoon (1.1 pounds/ 500 grams) flour
- 1 egg at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vinegar
- ¾ cup + around 2 tablespoons (210ml) water
- 1 teaspoon Salt
For the filling:
- 1.1 pounds (500 grams) farmer's cheese or tvorog, crumbled
- 8.8 ounces (250 grams) sulguni sulguni cheese grated (or low-moisture mozzarella or havarti)
Prepare the Filling:
1. Mix all the filling ingredients in a bowl until homogeneous. Taste and add more salt if needed.
Prepare the Dough:
2. Using a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, knead all the ingredients at a low speed until the dough comes together. Let the mixer gather any ingredient remnants at the bottom of the bowl and continue kneading for about another 8 minutes until the dough is smooth and firm, similar to the consistency of fondant. If the ingredients at the bottom don't integrate on their own, you can add a few drops of water to the bowl. If the dough does not reach the desired consistency after the kneading, wrap it in plastic wrap and set it aside for 15 minutes. Then return the dough to the mixing bowl and knead for 4 more minutes. Divide the dough into two parts and wrap them in plastic wrap. Set aside for 30 minutes.
Filling, shaping and frying:
3. On a floured work surface, roll out one part of the dough and form it into a 0.1" (3mm) sheet. Cut out circles about 3 inches (8cm) in diameter and place a tablespoon of the filling in the middle of each one, leaving the edges filling free. Fold the dough over the filling to create a crescent shape and tightly crimp with a fork. Wrap the remaining rounds in plastic wrap so they don't dry out. Repeat the operation with the rest of the dough.
4. Heat some oil in a wide-bottomed pot or electric deep fryer and fry the turnovers for 2 to 3 minutes until golden brown. Remove them with a slotted spoon and transfer them to a plate lined with parchment paper.
Please note: if you want to freeze the turnovers, first arrange them on a platter in a single layer and freeze them for at least 30 minutes. After they freeze completely, transfer the turnovers to an airtight container.
This recipe is courtesy of “Hashulchan” website.