Tasty pita pockets
This all started out after not receiving our typical pita pockets from our grocery order. Grocery orders during pandemic time have been highly variable, and we've been left to figure out how to "close the gap" in cases where the grocery store just hasn't had stock (or the employee wasn't able to find the item, or find a reasonable substitute, or ..) and this is no different.
It's a good thing that we're ~16 months after the pandemic started and the grocers have all figured out how to keep their stores stocked - right? (/s in case it was missed!)
Sarcasm aside, I needed some pita pockets for some falafel's that Holly was making for dinner.
These kept well in a tupperware until the next day (and we ate them all..), so could easily be made ahead of time.
- 1 cup Water
- 2 tsp active dry yeast
- 1/2 tsp sugar
- 1/2 cup flour
- 2 cups all-purpose flour, more for dusting later
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, more for the bowl
Make the Sponge
- In a large bowl add 1 cup water, yeast, sugar and whisk together. Place in a warm place, and wait until it starts bubbling (15 minutes). If it doesn't bubble, check that your yeast is alive and well...
Make the Dough
- Add salt, olive oil and flour.
- Stir until a shaggy mixture forms.
- Dust your work surface with a bit of flour, and pour the mixture on to your surface.
- Knead until all the flour is incorporated. This will take a bit of work and sticky hands. Add flour as necessary (I added almost 1/2 cup extra).
- Cover the dough and let it rest for 10 minutes, the knead again for a few minutes. The dough should be a little bit moist.
- Oil a clean mixing bowl and transfer the dough to the bowl. Cover and let rise for 1 our or until the dough has doubled in size.
- Punch the down dough and divide into however many pita's you are making (I do 8). Roll each piece of dough into a tight ball. Cover the rolled balls with a towel and let rest for another 10 minutes.
Forming and baking the pita's
- Set your oven to ~480f, and put a heavy baking sheet, cast iron pan or pizza stone on the bottom rack. This acts as a large heat battery and helps "flash" the water in the dough into steam, giving the pocket.
- Using a rolling pin, roll each piece into a circle that's ~3/8" thick (less than 1/4, more than 1/8 .. somewhere in there). Lift and rotate the dough frequently so it doesn't stick to your work surface.
- Once the oven is at temperature and you've got a headstart on forming the pita's, let the oven stay at temperature for a few minutes.
- Bake 1 or 2 pita's at a time for ~2 minutes each, or until they get nice and puffy (but don't let them burn!).
- Using tongs, carefully turn each pita over, and make for another minute.
- Cover the baked pita's with a towel until you're finished all the pita's.