Whole Wheat Pitas

It has been a while since I have blogged, but Al really wanted me to blog the pitas I made.  They are delicious.  As I type this, I am eating my pita stuffed w/ hummus, scrambled, eggs, ham and warm spinach.  Here is the recipe and some tips:

Whole Wheat Pitas 
(Adapted from a recipe in "The Best Bread Ever" by Charles Van Over (my hero))

500 g. whole wheat flour
10 g. sea salt
10-12 g. sugar
1 tsp instant yeast
1 Tbsp olive oil
approx 320-330 ml water

Place flour, salt, sugar, and yeast in food processor.  Pulse to mix.  Add the olive oil and most of the water and process for about 30 seconds.  Add more water if needed and process about 25 more seconds until dough is soft, warm, and well incorporated.   Place in a greased bowl, cover and let rise for at least 3 hours. (the last time I made this i forgot about the dough and I think it sat out for about 8 hours - it was still fine).  

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees with a baking stone if possible.  After the dough has risen, dump it out and cut into 12 pieces - form each into a small ball and flatten slightly.  Cover and let these rest about 15 - 20 minutes.   Roll out to about a 7 inch circle using a little flour.  Cover and let rest 5-10 more minutes.  Make sure they do not stick together if they are overlapped at all - flour will help with this.  I had a few that stuck a little and had to be pulled apart and then did not puff very well in the oven.  Place about 3 pitas on the stone at a time - be careful not to handle them too much at this point, or they will not puff up.  You can use a pizza peel and flour for this step, or you can just use your hands like I do and risk more oven burns.  

They will be done in about 6 minutes and you can watch them puff up like a ball in the oven (I should have taken a picture of this).  Do not over-bake, as this will cause them to be brittle later when filling the pita.  Take them out of the oven and cool on a wire rack for about 1 minute.  Then I put them right into a plastic bread bag.  The steam will cause them to deflate and soften.  When serving the pitas, I think they are best if warmed slightly before stuffing.

Here is the Hummus Recipe:

15 oz. garbanzo beans, drained - reserve some liquid
3 Tbs. Tahini  (you can omit this and add more olive oil if there is a sesame allergy)
1 clove minced garlic
2 Tbs. lemon juice
2 Tbs. olive oil
cumin (optional)
paprika (optional)
salt and pepper to taste

Just puree everything in a blender or food processor.  Add some of the bean liquid at the end if too thick.  This will also thicken a little in the fridge.   The amounts in this recipe can be adjusted to your individual tastes.