In my search for Devyn Egigian’s request for Bokon, an Armenian bread said to be thicker than lavash, I consulted with Dorothy Arakelian who said the description sounded like her recipe for “Arabkirsee Gagulth Hatz”, a soft, spongy bread that’s served with cheese. This recipe comes from her cookbook “Come Into My Kitchen” which can be purchased through http://www.amazon.com/ (scroll down to see our link to amazon.com below). A picture of the large, flat loaves of bread can be seen on the right-hand side of the book’s cover. To try this, and the rest of Dorothy’s delicious recipes, I urge you to treat yourself to a copy of her cookbook without delay. I thoroughly enjoy mine!
Dorothy’s recipe for Arabkirsee Gagulth Hatz follows. For the record, Dorothy explains “gagulth” is pronounced ”gug gough”.
This recipe will yield 6 loaves, which will freeze well.
5 lbs. All purpose flour
3/4 cup Crisco (a solid vegetable shortening), melted and cooled
2 envelopes active dry yeast
1/4 tsp sugar
1 level tsp. Salt
3 to 4 cups lukewarm water, as needed to make a soft dough
For Egg wash:
2 eggs, well beaten
Place yeast in a small cup with sugar; add ½ cup of very warm water and stir to dissolve. Set aside to proof.
Meanwhile, heat Crisco to lukewarm (105 to 110 F.)
Using a large mixing bowl, combine all of the dough ingredients with a large spoon, and gradually start to knead with your hands until the dough is smooth, soft, and elastic.
Cover dough with plastic wrap, and a heavy towel. Place in a draft-free area to rise for about one hour or until doubled.
Sprinkle flour very lightly on the counter top; divide dough into 6 large balls about the size of a large grapefruit. Cover dough with plastic wrap for about 1/2 hour.
Preheat oven to 375 F.
Using a regular rolling pin, roll each ball into an oval shape, about 4 to 5 inches in length.
Gradually lengthen the oval by flipping the dough over the side of your hand until the oval stretches to about 12 inches long and about ½ inch thick.
Place ovals on ungreased baking sheets, brush tops with egg wash, and bake on the middle rack of the oven for about 12 to 15 minutes, or until puffy and light tan.
OK Devyn, it's your job to test this recipe to see how it compares to the bread your grandfather used to buy.
We eagerly await your opinion!