Meals and Courses

Pitta Breads

prep 1¾–2¾ hours, depending on machine, plus proving cook 10–12 mins
  • 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, plus extra for dusting
  • 1 teaspoon caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon fast-action dried yeast

Lift the bread pan out of a bread-making machine and fit the blade. Put the ingredients in the pan, following the order specified in the machine’s manual.

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

Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured surface at the end of the programme 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 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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