Ossetian Beet Top and Cheese Pies

These buttery pies are the perfect super-stuffed treat

From Olia Hercules' book Kaukasis: I grew up with Ossetian pies. Our friend Svetlana is married to an Ossetian and she was taught how to make them by her husband's mother in the mountains, then brought them to Ukraine and wowed us. A pile of them, some with meat, some with cheese, were exotic and familiar at the same time. In Ossetia they are traditionally served three at a time, sometimes round, sometimes triangular, each with a different filling and meant to represent fire, water, and earth—most definitely an ancient tradition, originating in paganism. Pagan pies, connecting us with the elements and the universe—I'm in.

Ossetian Beet Top and Cheese Pies
Ossetian Beet Top and Cheese PiesMatt Taylor-Gross