Breadtopia Spawns Breadmania

Thanks Kris for sending this…

My husband says that I have an obsession with the bread-baking thing and have become a bread baking “MANIAC”. The disorder, I guess has been named BreadMania. According to the DSM-IV (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition), LOL, there is no cure!

For the pita, I doubled your plain bread flour KN recipe. it takes quite a bit flour to keep the dough from sticking to the board and rolling pin, but that’s okay; it didn’t seem to harm the texture. This morning I rolled out large ones for stuffing. (Tennis ball size balls.) The nice thing is that they do not need a second proofing and take only about 6-8 min. in a 500 F oven on pre-heated stone. I own several bread books and have made pitas and other breads the old fashioned way, but will never go back.

Tomorrow, I will experiment with whole wheat and rye flour and seeded tops.

“GO PACKERS”

Kris Nickel

And thanks to Madelyn for contributing her “perfect pita” recipe…

I made Pitas over the weekend! They were a lot of fun. I found there is no need for no-knead! LOL! The dough was a lot of fun to work with and very quick to prepare. Probably not as sticky as no-knead (?) but I haven’t tried the no-knead for this because you have to roll the dough out.

In a nutshell I used this recipe
•1 package of yeast, or quick rising yeast
•1 teaspoon granulated sugar
•1/2 cup warm water (no more than 115F)
•3 cups bread flour
•1 1/4 teaspoon salt
•1 cup lukewarm water (no more than 115F)
Other recipes call for a little olive oil so I might try that next time.

Prepare the yeast in the usual way (1st three ingredients), then put everything in my Kitchen Aid with the dough hook and worked the dough until it was coming away from the bowl. Recipe called for a 3 hour first rise to double the volume but mine seemed ready in an hour.

I divided dough into 12 balls. Let them rest for about 15 minutes while you heat up your oven. Then rolled each one flat before putting in the oven. Baked 4 at a time. Mine were small… about 4-5 inches in diameter.

The way I baked them was, my oven is on the blink and the bake setting is not working so I cannot make regular loaves of bread. Pita likes hot oven temperatures so I put my brick pizza stone on the highest shelf and used my broiler set to high to heat things up to around 450 degrees. Shut broiler off before putting the pitas on the hot stone. 4 minutes on 1 side, 2 on the other. You then have to heat the stone and oven back up to do another batch. I was improvising and this method worked.

Note if you brush on olive oil before baking the dough you end up with less of a puff and more of a flat bread. You can still open them up the flatter ones with a fork like an English muffin. My first ones were very puffy, but I tried brushing on olive oil and those didn’t puff up like in the picture above.

I regularly bake no-knead rye bread and keep a rye starter in my fridge, so would be curious about any pita experiments encorporating rye. I went for the white, plain variety as this was my first venture into pita. I don’t think I will ever by pita again as it is hard to find fresh pitas!

10 thoughts on “How to Make Pita Bread

  1. Madelyn

    I decided the yield per packet of yeast could probably be increased so I tried the pitas with this modified recipe:

    1 package of yeast, or quick rising yeast
    1/2-1 teaspoon granulated sugar
    1/2 cup warm water (no more than 115F)
    *500g (4 c) bread flour
    *1 1/2 teaspoon salt
    *1-1/4 cup lukewarm water (no more than 115F)

    Yielded 16 pitas.

    Also noticed if you let the pitas rest after you roll them out and before putting them in the oven they tend to puff up better.

  2. Madelyn

    I made Pitas over the weekend! They were a lot of fun. I found there is no need for no-knead! LOL! The dough was a lot of fun to work with and very quick to prepare. Probably not as sticky as no-knead (?) but I haven’t tried the no-knead for this because you have to roll the dough out.

    In a nutshell I used this recipe
    •1 package of yeast, or quick rising yeast
    •1 teaspoon granulated sugar
    •1/2 cup warm water (no more than 115F)
    •3 cups bread flour
    •1 1/4 teaspoon salt
    •1 cup lukewarm water (no more than 115F)
    Other recipes call for a little olive oil so I might try that next time.

    Prepare the yeast in the usual way (1st three ingredients), then put everything in my Kitchen Aid with the dough hook and worked the dough until it was coming away from the bowl. Recipe called for a 3 hour first rise to double the volume but mine seemed ready in an hour.

    I divided dough into 12 balls. Let them rest for about 15 minutes while you heat up your oven. Then rolled each one flat before putting in the oven. Baked 4 at a time. Mine were small… about 4-5 inches in diameter.

    The way I baked them was, my oven is on the blink and the bake setting is not working so I cannot make regular loaves of bread. Pita likes hot oven temperatures so I put my brick pizza stone on the highest shelf and used my broiler set to high to heat things up to around 450 degrees. Shut broiler off before putting the pitas on the hot stone. 4 minutes on 1 side, 2 on the other. You then have to heat the stone and oven back up to do another batch. I was improvising and this method worked.

    Note if you brush on olive oil before baking the dough you end up with less of a puff and more of a flat bread. You can still open them up the flatter ones with a fork like an English muffin. My first ones were very puffy, but I tried brushing on olive oil and those didn’t puff up like in the picture above.

    I regularly bake no-knead rye bread and keep a rye starter in my fridge, so would be curious about any pita experiments encorporating rye. I went for the white, plain variety as this was my first venture into pita. I don’t think I will ever by pita again as it is hard to find fresh pitas!

  3. Where do I find the recipe to which this post refers? I searched for “pita” but seemed to get lost in non-pita topics. I have successfully been making 2/3 whole wheat pita, but alternate recipes are always worth a look.

  4. Dave W

    Thanks for the detailed instructions Kristine. Sounds like a great project for this weekend :)

  5. Kristine Nickel

    Thanks for the compliment.

    For the dough, I double the NKB irecipe. Refrigerating after proofing, makes it easier to handle , however, it will still be moist. Pre-heat oven and baking stone to 500F. Flour hands and pinch off a piece about the size of a tennis ball or larger. Shape into a smooth ball by quickly stretching it around and around until you have a nice smooth surface. On a large floured peel, roll the dough into a thin round about 1/8 “- 1/4″ thick . If it’s too thick, the dough won’t puff. Use flour as needed to keep the dough from sticking to the board and rolling pin.( No proofing needed.) Before sliding onto the pre-heated stone, make sure they don’t stick to the peel by carefully loosening the pitas with a bench scraper. If you don’t own a stone, a large cookie sheet will suffice…but do not pre-heat it; the pan could warp or buckle.

    Bake for about 7 min. or until lightly browned and puffed. (Four 6 inch pitas fit on my stone) Cool on rack and store in a plastic bag. They freeze well. To reheat, thaw, split and stuff with foil to keep pocket open.

    Forming and baking pitas takes a little practice. After several tries and a few deformed pitas, I finnaly got it right. Well, at least some of the time. If you like seeds, just before baking, brush the pitas with water and sprinkle with seeds of your choice.

    Enjoy,
    Kristine, AKA : The BreadManiac

  6. Dave W

    Kristine, the pitas look wonderful, especially the breakfast pitas! How do you know when they are done? Do you go by sight or temperature? I’ve never made pitas is there anything else that needs to be done? You just roll them out and bake?
    Thanks and great job!

  7. Kristine

    Salad Filled Whole Wheat Pita

  8. Kristine

    Insert crumpled foil before preheating

  9. Kristine

    Just pulled my whole wheat pita out of the oven. They did not pouf up as much as the white ones, but by pulling out some of dough inside, there is plenty of room to fill them. To keep it open, I put a piece of crumpled foil inside before re-heating.

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