Middle Eastern

Homemade Pita Bread

warm fragrant home-baked pita bread that’s far greater than store-bought pita

Filling your home with the aroma of freshly baked, soft, fluffy pita bread is a wondrous experience. Pita bread has roots in the prehistoric flatbreads of the Middle East and is still one of the most commonly consumed breads of the region. Its unique hollow center creates this pocket ready to be stuffed with deliciously spiced meats and crisp vegetables. This steam-puffed “pocket pita” is traditionally cooked in the high temperatures of a tanoor, which is a cylindrical clay or metal oven. Serve this homemade pita bread alongside Alaa’s Pantry, Shakshuka for a delicious meal.

Homemade Pita Bread

  • Servings: 8 pita pockets'
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Ingredients:

1 cup warm water
1 tsp sugar
2 tsp yeast

2 cups all purpose flour
¾ cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp olive oil

Directions:

  1. Mix together warm water, sugar, and yeast.
  2. In a separate bowl add all purpose flour, whole wheat flour, salt, and olive oil.
  3. Add water and yeast to flour mixture slowly. Mix together carefully with a wooden spoon. If dough is too dry, add 1 tbsp of water at a time (it’s okay if your dough is just a little sticky, the moisture will help the pita rise and separate).
  4. Lightly flour a surface and knead your dough for about 6 minutes.
  5. In a clean bowl, add olive oil and grease the surface of the bowl. Add your dough and coat with oil by carefully mixing it around. Then cover the bowl with a kitchen towel and leave in a warm place for 1 to 1 ½ hours to rise.
  6. Once done, add a light dusting of flour to surface and gently roll out the dough into a log shape. Next cut the dough into 12 equal portions and cover with a damp towel.
  7. Next shape each small portion into a ball. Add a light dusting of flour if necessary and using a rolling pin, roll out into a disc about 6 to 8-inches in diameter and ⅛ -inch in thickness (try not to roll too thin).
  8. Place dough discs onto lightly floured parchment paper and cover with a damp towel as you roll out the rest of the dough. Once finished leave in a warm place for 20 minutes to allow to rise.
  9. Heat oven to 500 degrees F. On bottom shelf of oven, place a heavy-duty baking sheet, large cast-iron pan or ceramic baking tile.
  10. Carefully lift the dough disc and place quickly on hot baking sheet. After 2 minutes the dough should be nicely puffed. Turn over with tongs or spatula and bake 1 minute more. The pita should be pale, with only a few brown speckles. Transfer warm pita to a napkin-lined basket and cover so bread stays soft and warm. Repeat with the rest of the dough discs.

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