Monday, 9 May 2011

Pitta Bread

Two savoury posts in a row?

Yes, this extremely sweet toothed baking enthusiast is well. Nope, no discernable fever. No night-time alien visitors transforming my candy-coated soul. No sugar-induced coma resulting in a lifetime ban on the sweet stuff (Imagine! That thought will pervade my nightmares for evermore!).

Normal service will resume in the next post but in the meanwhile let me tell you a little about my afternoon making pitta bread.

This morning A turned to me and he said:

'I know you can happily eat a cake for breakfast, another for lunch and a final one for supper, but I actually quite like savoury stuff. In fact, and this may be hard for you to believe, but a lot of people in this world do. Can we give it a go?'

Aghast and slightly disbelieving (I mean, who wouldn't want cake to form 90% of their diet??*), we agreed that providing I got to show off my new MagiMix, this 'savoury' baking would be happening.

And this is what we ate: Lamb, hummus and pitta bread. And this is how it got made.

Pitta bread

(adapted from Jill Dupleix, The Times)


450g white plain flour
1 tsp fine-ground sea salt
1 tsp white sugar
2 sachets (14g) fast-action dry yeast
300ml tepid water
1 tbsp olive oil

1. Mix the flour, salt, sugar and yeast together in a bowl
2. Make a well in the middle and stir in the warm water and olive oil
3. Using initially a knife, then your hands mix until it comes together as a dough
4. Knead on a lightly floured surface for 10 minutes until smooth and elastic
5. Place in a large, clean bowl, cover with a tea towel and leave to rise for one to two hours in a warm place until doubled in size
6. Punch the dough down and knead for a further one to two minutes
7. Cut the dough into 12 pieces, shape into balls, and, using a rolling pin or stretching with your fingers shape into oval, pitta shapes

8. Set aside for 10 minutes
9. Heat the oven to 200C/180C fan/Gas 6

10. Bake on a lightly floured tray for 6 to 10 minutes until puffy, soft and pale

Baker's notes...
  • The pitta breads, although tasty when warm straight from the oven, tasted quite doughy initially and were actually crispier the following day
  • When rolling, stretch them a little bigger than you want them as the dough tends to spring back
  • They will last 2-3 days before going pretty dry but freeze well
  • The above recipe makes 12, but is easily halved



200g canned chickpeas
juice of two lemons
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tsp ground cumin
Salt to taste
75ml tahini/sesame seed paste (optional)
4 tbsp water
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp papika

1. Drain and rinse the chickpeas
2. Combine the chickpeas, lemon juice, garlic, cumin, salt, tahini, and water in a food processor, and blend to a creamy purée
3. You may wish to add further lemon juice, garlic, cumin or salt to taste
4. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and scatter with a few leftover chickpeas

A's lamb kebab marinade


Diced lamb (we used approx 14 little pieces to fill two pitta breads each)
1 small onion, chopped
1 garlic clove
salt and pepper
1 tsp ground cumin
3 tbsps olive oil
half a teaspoon cayenne pepper

1. Combine all the ingredients in a bowl, mix well
2. Cover and pop in the fridge for one hour, longer if you have the time
3. Heat a frying pan and add the ingredients, frying the lamb on each side for about two minutes. The onion will likely cook quicker, remove before the lamb if so. It may also be worth cooking in batches. Easier this way

*I quite like carrots. They form the other 10%.

1 comment:

  1. Candy-coated soul? I think we're soul mates. Although, like A, I do enjoy a bit of the adult food every now and again.


Thank you very much for your comment- I appreciate every single one of them!