Monday, August 16, 2010

Pita Bread

Pita is a  round pocket bread that is prevalent in Middle East and Mediterranean cuisine.The pocket in pita is formed when the steam puffs up the dough while cooking and when cooled there is  a pocket in the middle. I had never attempted a pita before but was tempted to when I found an excellent recipe at Peter Minakis' Kalofagas.He had adapted the recipe from Vefa's Kitchen by Vefa Alexiaduo.

All Purpose Flour: 3 cups
Salt: :1 tsp or as per taste
Instant Yeast: 2 tsp
Sugar: 1 tsp
Olive oil:2 tbsp

Warm Water : 1 and 3/4 cup or as needed.
Corn meal : for dusting
Vegetable oil for greasing the pan

In a bowl add water,oil,yeast,salt and sugar and let stand for 5 minutes or until active.Add in flour in to the bowl and knead until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl. Cover and leave in a warm spot for rising about 30 minutes.

Divide the risen dough into 6 pieces.Roll out each piece into 1/4 inch  thick 8-10 inch rounds.Dust with corn meal and poke each round with the tines of the fork gently.

Heat a pan on medium heat and spray with little oil.Place a pita on the hot pan/skillet and cook for a few minutes till you see it puffing up.Flip to the other side and cook till done.

Stack the pita one on top of the other and keep wrapped in foil or warm towels till serving time.Serve it with your choice of gravy or loaded with salad or your choice of filling.

The pita puffed up excellently and you can see the pocket here :)

The pita tasted fine with the salad I stuffed up inside.The texture was right and same as that of shop bought ones. You can also cut it into small pieces and bake into pita chips.Thanks Peter for the keeper recipe.


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