Meals and Courses

Pitta Bread

prep Time 1½—2½ hours, depending on machine, plus shaping, proving and baking
  • 250 ml (8 fl oz) water
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 375 g (12 oz) strong white bread flour
  • 1 teaspoon caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon fast-action dried yeast

Lift the bread pan out of the machine and fit the blade. Put the ingredients in the pan, following the order specified in the manual.

Fit the pan into the machine and close the lid. Set to the dough programme.

At the end of the programme turn the dough out on to a floured surface and cut it into 8 equal-sized pieces. Roll out each piece to an oval about 15 cm (6 inches) long. Arrange in a single layer on a well-floured clean, dry tea towel. Cover loosely with a second clean, dry tea towel and leave to rise in a warm place for 30 minutes.

Put a floured baking sheet in a preheated oven, 230°C (450°F), Gas Mark 8, and leave to heat up for 5 minutes. Transfer half the breads to the baking sheet and cook for 5—6 minutes until just beginning to colour. Remove from the oven and leave to cool on a wire rack while you cook the remainder. Wrap the still warm pittas in a clean, dry tea towel to keep them soft until ready to serve. If they are left to go cold, warm the pittas through in a hot oven before serving.

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