How to make your own pita
Pita - Whether you love baking bread, or just want to give it a try, making pitas is not a major time commitment. They can be baked and sandwich-stuffed in less than two hours. This recipe includes half white flour and half whole wheat flour for health and are delish!
● 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
● 1 teaspoon sugar - demerara or white are best
● 1 cup warm water - NOT hot or boiling
● ¼ cup whole-wheat flour
● 2 ½ cups unbleached all-purposed flour
● 1 heaping teaspoon kosher salt
● 2-3 tablespoons olive oil
- Add yeast and sugar to the warm water in a large mixing bowl.
- Stir a few times to help it dissolve.
- Add olive oil to the water, then add the flours and mix together using hands, a mixer or a wooden spoon. After all is mixed together, add the salt and mix again until well-incorporated and until dough is soft, supple, and slightly sticky. If your dough sticks to the sides of the bowl, add up to 1/4 cup more flour, a little at a time.
- Wipe inside of a second bowl with 1/4 teaspoon olive oil. Turn dough around in bowl to cover with a thin film of oil; cover bowl with plastic wrap and let sit until dough has doubled in size, about 2 hours (minimum 30 minutes for those in a rush for pita goodness!)
- After the dough has risen, remove from bowl and place onto a floured work surface. At this phase, you can refrigerate your dough for up to 1 week, allowing the flavors to develop even more!
- Lightly pat into a flat shape about 1 inch thick. Use a knife to cut dough into 8 even sized pieces, or just rip apart similarly sized portions. Without too much pressure, form each piece into a small round ball with a smooth top, pulling dough from the sides and tucking the ends underneath the bottom.
- Cover dough balls with lightly oiled plastic wrap and let rest while you start rolling them out one at a time into thin “rounds”. Cover with a moist towel as you finish them all.
- Oven Method: Oven-baking pitas come out more pale, with only a few brown speckles, but are softer and puff up more during the cooking process. You can also bake several at a time.
- Heat oven to 475 degrees. On bottom shelf of oven, place a heavy-duty baking sheet, large cast-iron pan or ceramic baking tile. Carefully lift the dough circle and place quickly into oven. After 2 minutes the dough should be nicely puffed. Turn over with tongs or spatula and bake 1 minute more.
- Stovetop cooking: While only 1 pita can be made at a time using the stovetop method, cooking this way results in a crispier outside which some people prefer. The pita doesn’t puff up but is delicious, fast and easy.
- Lay pita bread into a hot, dry skillet over a medium-high heat and cook until bread begins to puff up and bottom has brown spots and blisters, about 3 minutes. Flip, cook 2 more minutes, and flip back onto original side to cook for about 30 more seconds. Pita bread will begin to puff up and fill with hot air.
- Stack cooked breads on a plate; when cool enough to handle, break breads in half and open the pocket inside for stuffing.