Switzerland has some amazing bread. Beautiful loaves of bread including loads of different grains, seeds, you name it. Big, soft, lightly salted warm pretzels? That alone is reason to move here and apply for citizenship. Sadly, it doesn’t apply to all bread products. Bagels? Nope. Tortillas? Don’t even bother. Pitas now round out the list of breads that I realize I am capable of making as a result of Switzerland having crappy versions of them. And thank goodness for that–these were fantastic. Quick this isn’t. You need to leave plenty of time for the pitas to “rise” a couple of times, but it’s relatively easy. Even easier, I would imagine, if you are the proud owner of a stand mixer. I highly recommend giving this a go next time you’re doing say grilled lamb burgers.
What I don’t recommend is taking the resting dough, beautifully rolled out and placed on cookie sheets and then walk to a friend’s house in the rain. THAT is not a good idea. The dough doesn’t like it and it will protest by making cooking this a pain in the a**. But stupidity aside, this still worked out nicely and the results were worth every minute. If you don’t want to grill these, feel free to just heat them in a little oil on a pan on your stove top. It will work just fine. The pitas will also keep for a few days in a Ziploc bag and reheated in a skillet. That’s if you have leftovers.
from Fine Cooking
- 1 tbsp honey
- 2 tsp. active dry yeast
- 15-3/4 oz. (3-1/2 cups) unbleached all-purpose flour; more as needed
- 2-1/2 oz. (1/2 cup) whole-wheat flour
- 1-1/2 tsp. kosher salt
- 2 tbsp. olive oil; more for the bowl
- In a small bowl, mix the honey with 1/2 cup lukewarm water and stir in the yeast. Let sit until the yeast has started to foam, 2 to 3 minutes.
- Put both flours and the salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook.
- With the mixer running on low-speed, mix in the olive oil until fully incorporated, about 2 minutes. (I just dumped this in and used a fork to incorporate).
- Add the yeast mixture and 1 cup lukewarm water and mix until fully incorporated, 2 to 3 minutes more. Raise the speed to medium and knead the dough until it comes away from the sides of the bowl and forms a ball that is smooth, elastic, and no longer sticky, 4 to 5 minutes.
- If the dough seems too wet, add more all-purpose flour, 1 tsp. at a time. KC note: don’t be nervous, I had to add quite a bit before the dough was pulling away from the bowl. Much of this will have to do with the humidity in the air. The more humid it is, the more flour you’ll need. Pay more mind to your eye than the measuring cup.
- Raise the speed to medium high and continue to knead for 5 minutes.
- Oil a medium bowl, transfer the dough to the bowl, and roll to coat it with the oil. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
- Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead two or three times to remove any air bubbles.
- Using your hands, dusted with flour, roll the dough into a log and divide it evenly into 10 pieces.
- Roll each piece into a ball and then using a rolling-pin, roll out each piece into disks about 1/4 inch thick and 6 inches in diameter.
- Lightly oil two rimmed baking sheets. Put the disks on the baking sheets, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise until just doubled in thickness, 30 to 45 minutes.
- Prepare a medium-high gas grill fire (or over medium-high heat on your stove top), leaving one burner off, or set up a charcoal grill for indirect heat, by pushing the coals off to one side.
- Brush a cast-iron griddle or skillet lightly with olive oil and put it on the grill over the cool zone. When very hot, cook the pitas in batches on the griddle until starting to brown, 2 to 3 minutes.
- Flip and continue cooking until lightly golden on the bottom and the pitas are cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes more.