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Oxford Companion to Food

Oxford Companion to Food

By Alan Davidson

Published 2014

  • About

choerek (or choereg, choereq, churekg etc.—the name has seemingly innumerable transcriptions) means ‘holiday bread’. This is an enriched bread (using e.g. sour cream, butter, egg), oven baked, made in a variety of shapes and sizes and flavours in the Caucasus. The most common shape is ‘knotted’ or braided bread, but it also occurs in snail shapes in Georgia. Flavourings include aniseed, mahlab (a spice derived from black cherry kernels), vanilla, cinnamon, and grated lemon or orange rind.

In Turkey a similar bread is called paskalya coregi, meaning Easter bread, a role which is also played by the Greek version, tsoureki; see easter foods. Etymological considerations suggest that the Greek name comes via Turkey from the Caucasus, rather than the other way round.