Homemade pitta bread are delicious served with dips such as creamy hummus and smokey baba ganoush, alongside fresh crispy vegetables. They’re also great for packed lunches, or toasted with butter and marmite as a late afternoon snack.
I like adding a touch of wholemeal flour to these pitta breads for a little extra flavour. In this instance I used a blend of stoneground emmer and rye flours because that is what I had to hand in the cupboard on the day(!), but if you don’t have these you can use 100g of ordinary wholemeal flour instead as a substitute, to blend with the strong white bread flour.
Makes 8-10 pitta breads
Place the water, sugar, yeast and olive oil in a mixing bowl and combine. Add the flours and mix to create a dough. Lastly add the salt and stir it through. Knead the dough with your hands until it becomes smooth and stops being sticky. Place in a lightly oiled bowl, cover with a cloth and leave to rest at room temperature for 1 hour.
You may need to bake your pittas in batches, around 2 or 3 at a time, depending on the size of your oven and baking trays. Line your baking trays with baking parchment in preparation, and dust this with flour to prevent any sticking. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and divide it into lumps of 100-125g. Shape them into firm, round balls. Place them on the baking trays, cover with a cloth, and leave to rest at room temperature for 30-40 minutes.
Preheat your oven to 240°C. Place an ovenproof dish containing around 12 ice cubes in the base of the oven to create steam. Dust flour over the tops of each ball of dough and use the palm of your hand to flatten them into pitta shapes, 3-4 mm thick. When you are ready to bake the pittas, quickly remove the ice cubes and slot the pittas inside. Bake for around 6-7 minutes, or until risen. If you cook them in batches, remember to refresh the steam. Remove, and wrap them in a clean tea towel to keep them soft and a little warm until you are ready to eat them.