Friday, January 14, 2005

Homemade Pita Bread

I love pita bread. I use it instead of regular sliced bread frequently. You just can't beat the convenience of holding a little pocket and eliminating the possibility of the filling escaping out the back of your snack.
I actually had no idea how easy it was to make this myself. I have no problem with the vast majority of store bought pitas, but I have found them to be a bit rubbery, or a bit brittle, on occasion.
I got this recipe from Tyler Florence on Food 911, though I slightly modified it to account for the ingredients that I had in the house. He's definately a favorite of mine in terms of the food network chefs. Not because I dislike the others, but I find T.F. to be very likeable and excellent at explaining all the steps to his recipes. They're uncomplicated and delicious. I would definately jump at the chance to meet Tyler or to be on Food 911 - and not just because I'd love to blog about it afterwards, either.

Pita Bread
1 packet active dry yeast
1 1/2 cups warm (105-115F) water
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
3 1/2 cups ap flour
Combine sugar, water and yeast. Let stand for 15 minutes, until foaming.
Stir in salt and flour until fully incorporated. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth, about 5 minutes.
Allow to rise in a lightly oiled bowl until doubled in size, 1 1/2 hours.
Turn on your broiler and lightly oil a baking sheet.
Punch the dough down, divide it into 10 pieces, and gather each piece into a ball; keeping all of them lightly floured and covered while you work. Allow the balls of dough to rest, covered, for 15 minutes so they will be easier to roll out.
Roll out until balls form circles about 1/8 - 1/4 inch thick.
Place on baking sheet and broil for 3 minutes, until lightly browned. Flip over and broil again for 1 1/2 - 2 minutes. You just have to keep an eye on these guys depending on how hot your broiler gets.
Remove from oven and cool between kitchen towels to keep the pitas moist.
Store in an airtight container.