Homemade Pita Bread Recipe
It’s easily available, why would you take the pain of baking it? I could hear the question flying around. I chose to ignore it! How should I explain this to my DH?
I’m sure some/many of you can relate to the idea of freshly baked bread. Made from scratch… with the house filled with the aroma that makes neighbors jealous! From blooming the yeast to see the bread rise… Simple pleasures of life! It’s not just about bread…anything homemade, prepared with lots of love is healthier and tastes way better than store bought ones.
Taking my love for Lebanese cuisine forward, I’m sharing these Pitas, teamed some piping hot Falafels and Cilantro Jalapeño Hummus with my gang at Angie’s “Fiesta Friday” being hosted Loretta @Safariofthemind and Ginger@Ginger&Bread . Join us in a weekend full of fun, frolic, great food & laughter!
This is how I made them!
Yield: 12 Pitas
2 1/2 cup APF/Maida + more as required
1/2 cup Whole Wheat Flour/ Aata
7 gms/ 1/4 oz Active Dry Yeast
1/2 cup + 1/2 cup Warm Water
1/2 cup Warm Milk
1 1/4 tsp Salt
1 tsp Sugar
3 + 1 Tbs Olive Oil
1/2 tsp Dry Herbs (optional)
1.Blooming the yeast: In a bowl (large enough to hold the dough), combine the yeast, 1/2 cup warm water,sugar and mix well. Allow to sit for about 10-15 minutes, until foamy. In case the yeast doesn’t bloom, throw away the mixture and start again.
2. Sift together APF and Wheat flour and set aside. Mix the remaining 1/2 cup warm water and 1/2 cup warm milk. Set aside.
3. Kneading the dough: Once the yeast has bloomed and is ready to be used, to the same bowl, add 3 Tbs olive oil, APF + Wheat flour mixture, herbs(if using) and salt. Start by combining the ingredients. Add the water + milk mixture and knead for a few minutes, until a dough ball comes together. Add a little flour if required. Take another large bowl and apply 1 Tbs oil on the base, sides and on the dough.
4. Fermentation: Place the dough in the greased bowl and cover with a cling film. Set the bowl aside, in a warm place for 1 to 1.5 hours for the dough to rise. Depending on the heat, the dough might take more or less time. The dough will almost double in this time period.
5. Once the dough rises, uncover the bowl and pull the dough together to form a ball. It will be slightly sticky. Dust some flour and knead it until its elastic but no longer sticky. Divide the dough into 12 equal sized balls. Place these dough balls on an area / plate / board, lightly dusted with flour. Make sure they are not placed too close to each other as the dough will continue to rise. Cover the dough balls with a plastic wrap/cling film and set aside for 10 mins.
Pocketless Pitas –
6. Heat a skillet/griddle/tava on medium low heat. I like to use a cast iron skillet. On a floured surface, roll out each dough ball into a circle (5-6″) approximately 1/4″ thick. Dust the rolling pin with flour if required. If using cast iron skillet, brush with a little olive oil each time before placing the rolled out pita on the skillet.
Gently place the rolled out pita on the heated skillet and cook for 2-3 minutes or until the top facing side begins to bubble and base is lightly browned. Flip and cook the other side, until cooked. Remove the cooked pitas and place them covered with a light damp towel, until all the pitas are ready. Once cool, store in a plastic/zip lock bag.
Pita Pockets –
7. Pre-heat the oven to 500ºF/ 260ºC. On a floured surface, roll out each dough ball into a circle (5-6″) approximately 1/8″ thick. Dust the rolling pin with flour if required. Let them rest for at least 10 mins before baking. Place the rested, rolled out Pitas on a baking sheet (pre-heated in the oven) and place the baking sheet on the lowest rack, closest to the heat source. Bake for 3-4 minutes. You will see the pita puffing up like a balloon (yayee!) !
8) Flip the pita and bake for another minute or 2. Please be careful, the baking sheet will be very hot! Bake for some more time if you like toasted Pitas. You may also use the broil option to get the color. Carefully, remove the pitas when done, deflate slightly and place in a slightly damp paper towel. These can be cooked on the stovetop as well. Store in a plastic bag/ zip lock bag.
Use these pitas for wraps, fill with your favorite stuffing or just make some pita chips! You will love these either way!
Recipe adapted from “Dedemed”
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