Super fluffy and a whole lot healthier, this whole wheat pita bread is a game changer. This recipe is super easy and perfect for beginners too! Serve with some homemade hummus, falafel and salad for a delicious and heart-warming meal.
Add warm water, sugar and yeast in a large bowl. Stir gently. Set aside for 5-10 minutes or until the yeast gets activated. Once the yeast is active, the surface will be slightly frothy.
Add whole wheat flour, olive oil and salt to the yeast mixture. Mix together till everything comes together in a lumpy ball. Knead for 8-10 minutes by hand or use a stand mixer and knead on low for 6-7 minutes. The dough will be slightly sticky and that's normal.
Place the dough in a large bowl lightly coated with olive oil. Make sure the entire dough is coated with oil. Cover the bowl with a warm wet cloth (dip the cloth in warm water and squeeze out the excess water). Allow the dough to rest for 1-2 hours or until it doubles in size.
Once doubled, punch the dough to release air. Divide the dough into 12 equal portions and shape them into balls. Cover back with the same cloth and allow to sit for 15 minutes.
Roll out the dough balls into ¼ inch thick rounds. Dust with a little flour, if necessary. Keep covered while you heat up the skillet
Stovetop Cooking Instructions
Heat a cast iron skillet or a frying pan on a high flame. Place a pita bread round on the pan or skillet. Cook for 1-2 minutes on each side, lightly pressing it down with a spatula.
After lightly cooking both sides, place the pita directly on the fire and allow it to puff up.
Cook until lightly browned and transfer onto a plate and serve hot along with hummus and falafel!
Oven Cooking Instructions
Place a baking sheet in the oven and preheat oven to 220 C/428 F
Once the oven is preheated, carefully take out the baking tray using oven mitts and gently place the rolled out pitas on the baking sheet. Using oven mitts, place the sheet back into the oven. Bake for 7-10 minutes till the pitas are all puffed up and a light golden brown on top.
Allow the yeast to proof in warm water for at least 10-15 minutes before adding it to the flour. This is an essential step to activate the yeast and allow the dough to rise properly. You can skip this if you’re using instant yeast.
Make sure the water is lukewarm (about 45° C). Hot water will kill the yeast and if the water is cold, it won’t be activated.
Remember to knead the dough for at least 10-15 minutes until soft and smooth. You can also use a stand mixer for this which will reduce the kneading time to 8-10 minutes.
Roll out the dough evenly and carefully to ¼ inch thickness to make sure that the pita bread puffs up perfectly and has those beautiful pockets.
If you are freezing these pita breads, place them in airtight boxes or ziplock bags with parchment paper between each pita to prevent them drying out or sticking to each other.
To refrigerate the dough for later, make sure to proof it and let it double in size. Then punch it down and refrigerate
If baking the pita bread, putting rolled out dough on a hot baking plate helps it puff up better and faster