Greek Pita Bread

Greek Pita Bread

Details

So much better then store-bought — this Greek-style pita bread is deliciously chewy, yet soft and tender.
  • Serves: 6 to 8
  • Active Time: 30 mins
  • Total Time: 2 hrs
  • Views: 8,718
  • Success: 100%

Steps

Step 1: Preparing the Dough

• 2 cups & 3 tbsp unbleached bread flour
• 1 cup warm water (no higher than 110°F)
• 2 tsp active yeast
• 1 tsp sugar
• 2 tsp sea salt
• 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

Method

To prepare the dough, pour the water into a large bowl and sprinkle the yeast over top. Let sit for a minute or so without stirring. Once the yeast has dissolved, stir to combine. Let sit for about 10 minutes.

To mix the dough, add the sugar and oil to the yeast mixture and stir to combine. Next, add approximately half of the flour — using a wooden spoon, stir to incorporate.

Next, add the salt, stir to combine and then add the remaining flour and stir again. Once the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl, transfer it to a lightly floured counter top.

Knead the dough for at least 5 to 8 minutes until it is smooth. Don’t be tempted to add too much flour.

Clean out the mixing bowl, if necessary and place the kneaded dough inside. Cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap and let rise, at room temperature, until it doubles in size (approximately 1 to 1 1/2 hours).

Note: At this point, the dough can be refrigerate and left to ferment overnight.

Step 2: Rolling & Cooking the Pita

Method

Once the dough has doubled in size, punch it down to expel the gas. Cover the dough again and let it rest for about 5 minutes.

Next, using a bench scraper, divide the dough into about 8 smaller balls and gently flatten each piece into a thick disk. Sprinkle the pieces with a bit of flour and then cover with a clean kitchen towel or plastic wrap until ready to shape and bake.

To shape the pita, using a rolling pin, roll each piece of dough out into a round tortilla-like shape. The thickness that you roll it out to will ultimately depend on personal preference and how the pitas are intended to be used — dipping, as a side, for gyros. Try experimenting with different thicknesses to see what you prefer.

If the dough starts to spring back as you roll it, set it aside to rest for a few minutes, then continue rolling. Repeat with the remaining pieces of dough — once you a hang of the rhythm, you can be cooking one pita while rolling out the next one.

Next heat a medium-sized fry pan (preferably cast iron) to medium-high. Lightly grease the pan with oil, making sure to wipe away any excess oil using a paper towel.

Once the pan is hot, place a pita into the pan. Let cook for 1 or 2 minutes, or until it starts to bubble and puff up. At this point, flip the pita and let cook for another minute or so. Once cooked, brush the pita with a bit of extra-virgin oil, if desired. Keep the cooked pitas covered with a clean kitchen towel as you cook the remaining pita. Note: The pita is also nice brushed with a mixture of olive oil, vegan butter, garlic granules, onions granules and a pinch or so of salt.

Continue to do this with process with each pita — making sure to lightly oil the pan before cooking each pita.

*Note: The pita bread can also be cooked in the oven. In the oven, the pita will puff up very nicely and you can cook more then one at a time. Just note that you will not get the same nice coloring as you would if you cooked them on the stovetop. If baking in the oven, preheat the oven to 450°F (230°C) — place a baking stone or large baking sheet on the middle rack as the oven heats up.

This pita go particularly well with many of these delicious plant-based Greek recipes: Hummus, Tzatziki, Briam, Baked Beans | Plaki, Dolmades and Lemon Potatoes.

Chef's Notes

This pita can easily be made ahead — and in fact, it even taste better as it ferments. To make the bread ahead, prepare the dough through to the first rise and then punch it down. Then keep refrigerated for until the next day. The dough will even last for a few days in the refrigerator. An added bonus it that the bread can be cut, rolled and cooked as needed — meaning you do not need to cook all the pita at once.

Pitas, like most baked goods, are best when eaten immediately after cooking. That being said, any leftover pitas will keep for several days in an airtight bag or they can be frozen. Reheat the pita in the oven and serve warm.

6 Comments

  • Michele M
    Michele M
    Has anyone tried this with a combination of wheat flour? I'm not sure I've seen wheat bread flour but I have seen wheat pastry flour.
  • Ken R Rouxbe Staff
    Ken R
    Hi Michele- I've made partial whole wheat pita, starting with 50/50 and then edging up the ratio if you want. I find the optimal hydration (amount of water) goes up just a bit with whole wheat - so the dough is not overly dry. So, you might add an extra few ounces of water after some trial/error if warranted. ~Ken
  • Jacqueline A
    Jacqueline A
    I did a 50/50 blend with King Arthur Flour 100% White Whole Wheat. My dough was a bit dry to knead, but actually baked up in the pan beautifully. Next time I will reduce the salt though, it was too much for me.
  • Khristine T
    Khristine T
    I found the dough to be sticky during the kneading process. When do i stop adding flour? Is the dough supposed to be sticky when u knead?
  • Kirk B Rouxbe Staff
    Kirk B
    Hi Khristine - Great question - don’t worry - you are on the right path! We are not looking for the dough to be too dry - because we need moisture to puff and create that traditional pita space in the center when the dough bakes. If your dough seems too sticky (this sometimes happens when working on a cutting board) - that’s ok because we are looking for sticky! Try not to add extra flour. You could try to kneed your dough in a bowl if that's more comfortable - when/if using a bowl, fold the sticky dough toward yourself (and the side of the bowl) and then use the heel of your hand to push the dough away from you - turn the bowl a quarter way and repeat, etc… It sounds like you are on your way Khristine! Sticky is good! Enjoy and thanks for learning with Rouxbe! Chef Kirk
  • Dilara Y
    Dilara Y
    made in turkey..name is mayali

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