Posted by: Anja | July 6, 2011

Whole Wheat Pita Bread

Yesterday when I got up, I was wondering how I’d survive the day. I knew that I barely had some food left in my refrigerator – a couple of eggs, some tomatoes and cheese, but that’s not my usual breakfast, lunch or dinner but a sorry excuse for it. Then I remembered: I have yeast! Discovered with the help of my Italian friends in a small super market close to the university here after searching for hours without any success in a bigger supermarket, I convinced myself that it was time to bake bread again. Stop. I don’t have any all-purpose flour! Damn! But I have whole wheat flour! There are no recipes with only whole wheat flour! Well, just change them! Thought and done, so here’s my version of making pita bread with whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose flour.

Bread in general takes a lot of time and can be annoying to make simply because you have to run to the kitchen at appointed times, punching dough and turning it around seemingly for no reason until you finally get to put it into the oven. I won’t say that it’s completely worth the effort, but if you’re at home like me waiting for the computer repair person and can’t go out of the house, it is definitely a good thing if you know how to bake bread so that you won’t go hungry. Because there are not much ingredients in bread, mostly stuff that everyone should keep around the house anyway in my opinion, it is always a reliable fallback option.

Whole Wheat Pita Bread
idea adapted from Annie’s Eats

100ml warm water (not hot!)
7.5g fresh yeast or 12.5g active dry yeast (respectively half a package)
1 teaspoon of sugar
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1 tablespoon of olive oil
220g whole wheat flour

First step: Mix the warm water, yeast and sugar and stir until the yeast is completely dissolved. Add the flour, oil and salt and incorporate. The dough should come together as a slightly, really slightly, sticky ball. Flour your hands a bit and knead it until it is elastic for about three to five minutes. Slightly oil a medium-sized bowl with vegetable or olive oil and place the dough in the middle. Cover it with plastic foil and let it stand and rise for 1.5 hours.

Second step: Punch the dough down and separate into four equal-sized pieces. Put them on a non-sticky surface (plate, baking tray with baking paper) and cover them up again to rest for another 20 minutes.

Third step: Use a rolling pin or your hands to form the dough pieces into small disks of about 14-15cm (6″) in diameter. Put them on the non-sticky surface again and let them rest for 35-45 minutes.

Fourth step: When the resting time of your pitas is nearly over, preheat the oven to 220C (450F). Put them in there for about three minutes, then retrieve them. They should be slightly golden on top. If you can’t manage to put them all in at the same time, just do multiple batches and don’t worry, they’ll turn out fine. :)

I won’t lie and say that this a new culinary high for me – it isn’t – but I like baking bread from time to time and these pitas come in handy if you don’t want to prepare a whole loaf. :)

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