Pita bread is one of the most popular and the classic dish of the Lebanese cuisine. The Pita is a leavened bread made with all purpose flour. We can either cook it on the stove top or bake in the oven. Having tried both methods, I definitely recommend baking it. The pita puffs up beautifully in the oven and the layers are well formed. It easily gives way to making a pita pocket to put the stuffing in. The pita cooked on the stove top looks well done while the baked one would leave you in doubt as to its doneness. But do not worry, if it puffs up well, it is done well.
Oven vs Stovetop
When you make it on a stove top you have to ensure that the skillet is very hot to cook the pita but at the same time not too hot to spoil it. You have to be very careful and vigilant to turn it over at the right time and yet it is not a guarantee that the pita would puff largely instead of small little pockets like a regular roti. But when you bake it, all you need to do is set the temperature and watch the magic. I also loved the taste of the baked version as against the stovetop version.
You can use the pita with the classic falafel and Labneh. If you have any leftover pitas, simply toast them with butter and garlic and be amazed. I found this recipe on the Kitchn and it worked well for me.
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- OTG (optional)
- Cast Iron Skillet (Optional)
- 2.5-3 cups all-purpose flour approx 380-420gms
- 2 tsp instant yeast
- 1 cup Water
- 2 tsp Salt
- 2 tsp Olive oil
- Mix the flour, yeast, water, salt and oil in a large bowl to form a dough ensuring no dry flour remains
- Knead the dough for 7-8 minutes on a lightly floured surface to form a smooth pliable dough
- Cover the dough and set aside till it doubles in volume. It should take approximately one hour
- Once the dough has doubled, divide it into 8 parts and shape each part into a ball
If baking in the Oven
- Preheat the oven to 230C
- Take a baking tray and grease it with oil or line it with parchment
- Roll out each dough ball into a 3" thick circular shape
- Transfer the rolled out dough to the baking tray. Fit as many as you can ensuring that there is no overlap
- Bake for 3-4 minutes till the pita puffs up
- Take it out of the oven and repeat the same procedure till all the pitas are baked
- Serve warm with some Falafel and Labneh or Hummus
If cooking on the stove top
- Heat the cast iron skillet till it is very hot
- Roll out each dough ball into a 3" thick circular pita
- Transfer the rolled out dough to the skillet and cook for about 30 seconds
- Turn over the pita and cook for about a minute till it puffs up
- Take it off the heat and repeat the same procedure till all the pita breads are cooked
- Serve warm with Falafel and Labneh or Hummus
This is my post for the Blogging Marathon under the theme, Lebanese Cuisine’.