Hi there! We are halfway through the week, right? This calls for homemade bread, homemade pita bread specifically. One night last week I made falafel, but we didn’t have any pita bread. Between laziness and being stubborn, I knew making homemade pita bread couldn’t be that hard, right? Hooray! I WAS right. As long as you have a little patience and an appetite for crispy pockets of yeasty goodness (who doesn’t?), you are on your way to pita bliss.
Let’s get this bread engine started. Yeast does a little dance with warm water and sugar, gets all foamy and when we knead in a few cups of flour, bread magic is happening. I chose to knead my bread by hand, but if you have a stand mixer with a dough hook feel free to throw it in there and give it a whirl. After you knead, rising happens and then we are ready to bake! But first, we roll. Divide your dough into 7 pieces and roll each until about 1/4 inch thick. Shape doesn’t really matter, as long as your dough is the right thickness, everything will crisp up perfectly.
The best takeaway I had from making this twice was to make sure you have plenty of flour for your rolling surface. It’s better to have a little too much rather than ending up with a sticky round of dough and frustration as you just try to make it work. No go, just flour that dough!
Once your dough is rolled out, get a skillet heating over medium high heat. There are going to be three flips here while the bread is baking. Once to get the first side bubbling, second to bake one side and third to bake the other side. The first side we just want to bubble, so 30 or so seconds on the heat. 1-2 minutes on the other side and we pita-ing!
The level of done-ness is up to you. I liked mine with a few darker spots, but if you prefer an all over soft bread, keep the heat low. The size and shape of the bubbles is going to vary, but embrace them. I found that there was really no rhyme or reason to when I got bigger bubbles or smaller ones. Also, this pita bread is a bit different than the usual large packet bread. It is more of a cozy blanket for your falafel rather than a snug fitting jacket. A falafel blanket, no?
If you want more of a pocket pita bread, let the dough rise for a bit longer and you will yield a bigger bubble.
If you think you are going to love your pita bread as much as I did, go ahead and make a double batch. Both of my batches were gone in a matter of a few days and I wish I had made more! It maybe had to do with the fact that I was making a regular habit or sprinkling cinnamon and sugar on them. Enjoy!
Recipe adapted from The KitchnPrint
- 1 cup warm water
- 2 teaspoons active dry or instant yeast
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons salt
- Mix the water and yeast together, the flour and salt, knead together until a rough dough is formed.
- Sprinkle extra flour on your surface, knead by hand for about 7 minutes, or until dough is smooth and elastic. Don’t knead for too long or the dough will become tough. Add more flour as needed to keep the dough from sticking to your hands or the surface.
- Take bowl you mixed the dough ingredients in and spray with nonstick cooking spray (I use Trader Joe’s Coconut Oil spray). Transfer dough back into bowl and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour. If fluffier pita is desired, let rise for 2 hours.
- Turn it out onto a lightly floured work surface. Divide the dough into 8 equal pieces and roll each piece into a disc about 1/4 inch thick, setting aside each piece as it is rolled out.
- Warm a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat until, lightly spray with non-stick spray or brush with a bit of olive oil. Lay a rolled-out pita on the skillet and bake for 30 seconds, until you see bubbles starting to form. Flip and cook for 1-2 minutes on the other side, until large toasted spots appear on the underside. Flip again and cook another 1-2 minutes to toast the other side.
- Store pitas in a sealed container or plastic bag for up to one week.