Monday, May 27, 2013

Pita Bread

I have been searching and trying out countless numbers of pita bread recipes and have failed at all of them. Failed as in they did not puff and make the pocket, which is what a pita bread needs. So the other day I decided to try again and what do you know it puffed. I think I only had one or two that didn't puff. I love being able to successfully make things from scratch and to know that I am feeding my family healthier things that don't have tons of preservatives and such. Now these take some time but believe me they are super easy to make. Don't let the raising process scare you off. We stuffed our pitas with falafel but you can fill it with any kind of meat or rice or whatever your heart fancies.
Pita Bread
1 1/4 c. warm water
2 tsp yeast
2 tsp salt
2 T. olive oil
3-31/4 cup flour
In the bowl combine yeast and the warm water and let sit for 10 minutes until foamy and dissolved. Add 1 1/2 cup of the flour. Cover and let rest for 1 1/2 hours; until doubled. Add the salt, oil and 1 1/2 cup flour. Knead the dough 10 minutes with the dough hook of your stand mixer or by hand. You may need to add the extra 1/4 flour or a little bit more even until you have a soft smooth dough. Then place in and oiled bowl , cover and let raise another 1 1/2 hours or until doubled. Preheat the oven to 475 degrees. Have an oven shelf on the lowest level of oven and place a baking stone or a large cookie sheet on it before preheating it. When the dough is done raising. Cut the dough into 8-12 pieces depending on how big you want each pita. On a lightly floured surface, shape each into a ball and then flatten into a disk. Cover with oiled plastic and allow it to rest for 20  minutes. Then roll each disk into a circle a little under 1/4 inch thick. Try to get them all even throughout. Allow them to rest for 10 minutes before baking. Spray each one  with water from a water bottle right before you bake them. Quickly place 1 piece of dough onto heated stone or cookie sheet in oven. Bake for 3-5 minutes. The pita should be completely puffed but not beginning to brown. The dough will not puff if not moist enough. don't forget to spray each one right before you bake.

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