I love making bread. Of course for the taste of homemade bread, but also for the smell that it creates all over the house. OMG, if they could replicate that smell in a room spray. On second thought, it’s probably better that they don’t. I’d have constant bread cravings. I’ve experimented with the easiest bread recipe ever with Artisan Bread, and I’ve made flatbreads.
I decided to try my hand at making pita bread. I found a recipe in Martha Stewart Living to use as a starting point and I changed it just slightly. It takes a bit of time since you have to let the dough rise a couple of times, but that time is hands off so you aren’t babysitting it the whole time. I left the dough to rise and went to pick The Kid up so you’ve got time to multitask while the pitas are pita-ing. 😉
Whole Wheat Pita Bread
- 2 1/4 cups (270g) all purpose flour, divided
- 1 pkg active dry yeast (not quick acting)
- 1 1/2 tsp (6g) sugar
- 1 cup warm water, divided
- 3/4 cup (90g) whole wheat flour
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
Mix 1/2 cup (60g) all purpose flour, yeast, sugar, and 1/2 cup of the warm water in a large bowl until smooth. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in a warm area for about 30 minutes until it bubbles and doubles in size.
Stir in the remaining 1 3/4 cup (210g) flour, 1/2 cup warm water, whole wheat flour, salt, and olive oil. Mix until it forms a shaggy ball of dough. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead by hand for about 10 minutes until smooth and elastic. As an alternative, you can mix everything in the bowl of a mixer and use a dough hook to knead the dough for you.
Place the ball of dough in a bowl sprayed with non-stick spray. Cover and place in a warm area for about 45 minutes until it doubles in size. After rising, punch down the dough and divide it into 8 equal sized pieces. I just cut the dough in half with a knife, then into quarters, then into eighths.
Preheat your oven to 500 degrees and place a rack in the lowest position. Roll one of the small balls of dough into a 6 inch round. Gather the edges up together like you’re making a little sack and pinch them to form a ball. This makes the pocket part inside the pita. Turn the ball pinched side down and flatten with your hand.
Roll the ball again into a 6 inch round and place onto a cookie sheet. Repeat with the other dough balls. Bake at 500 degrees on the lowest rack for 2 – 3 minutes. They will puff up as they cook. Flip the pitas over and bake for another minute until they are puffed and browned a bit. Remove from oven and cool slightly.
Makes 8 pitas at approximately 187 calories each – 5g protein, 35g carbs, and 3g fat.
These are great served warm, but they also keep well in the fridge or freezer for sandwiches later. Dip them in homemade hummus, make a sandwich with them and throw in some homemade pickles, or just smear them with peanut butter and honey. They’re worth making even just for the smell they give your kitchen. 😉