Tuesday, December 16, 2008


Yield: 6 pita

Water warm, 110° 1/4 cup
Yeast, active dry 2 tsp
Sugar pinch

Flour, all purpose 3 cups
Water 3/4 cups
Olive oil 1 Tbsp
Salt 1 tsp

Olive oil 1/4 cup
Basic Steps: Proof → Mix → Knead → Rise → Portion → Rise → Bake
1. Mix yeast, sugar and 1/4 cup of warm water in a small bowl. Set aside to proof yeast, about 10 minutes.
2. In a large bowl, pour in yeast mixture, then flour, olive oil and salt. With a wooden spoon mix in about 1/2 cup of the remaining warm water. Add water a tablespoon at a time as needed to make a firm dough. Knead by hand for about 8-10 minutes till smooth.
3. Wipe a large bowl with a little oil, add dough and cover with plastic. Let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
4. Punch down dough and knead briefly. Cut into 6 equal pieces. Roll pieces into balls, place on a cookie sheet and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise till doubled again, another 20-30 minutes.
5. Preheat oven to 400°. Roll out each ball into a 6-7" round, taking care not to pierce dough surface (or pita won't puff).
6. Place rounds on a cookie sheet, brush each generously with olive oil, and bake about 5-8 minutes till tops begin to brown and pitas puff.
• Try a mixture of whole-wheat and white flour, or use all whole wheat. You may have to increase the amount of water.
• Brush pitas with water and sprinkle with sesame seeds or zattar spices right before you pop them in the oven if you like.
• Pita bread is common throughout the eastern Mediterranean. It is called pita in Greece and many countries of the Levant. It is also known as khoubz araby, or Arab bread. In Turkey the name is pide. Egyptians often call it aish. Versions of pita can be found from Iran to as far east as northern India with its naan bread.

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