pteromys: A Winner Is You! (winner)
Pteromys ([personal profile] pteromys) wrote2010-08-23 10:54 pm
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Pita Bread!

Actually, I don't know how to make real pita bread. This variant is unleavened and cooked in a dry frying pan so that you can watch them inflate.

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[identity profile] aliothsan.livejournal.com 2010-08-24 06:16 am (UTC)(link)
Recipe/method? I've been wanting to do this for a while and been lame.

also I love your new userpic. Just saying.

[identity profile] pteromys.livejournal.com 2010-08-24 07:18 am (UTC)(link)
Hee, the userpic is actually the first userpic I had on this journal. It's based on a rather old drawing (http://pteromys.melonisland.net/pics/index.php/imofriends/winner.png).

Anyway, this recipe is probably not optimal, but it's what I did this time. I don't actually understand why it works beyond "mumble mumble steam mumble", so it feels like a bit of black magic to me:

Dough: 2 parts all-purpose flour + 1 part water by volume
Pancake: Thickness is somewhere near the thickness of a (hardcover) textbook cover. Surface is dry enough that I can push it around on a hot pan.
Pan: an empty frying pan, slightly off-center over a small-ish fire.

I drop the pancake into the pan over the center of the fire. The first time I flip it, the top still is mostly uncooked but I can start to see a few spots where it's turning a cooked-dough color. The side that becomes visible after I flip it is dark and speckled with vaguely pea-sized white blisters.

Then comes the boring part--I move the pancake off-center from the fire and rotate it a little every 15 seconds or something, trying to heat it evenly. Coin-sized bubbles appear on the bottom side and I try not to let them inflate too much. (I just used my fingers for this step; keeping them from getting burned turned out to be easier than achieving the same dexterity with a spatula. It might've helped that they were caked with dough.)

Eventually the pancake changes from being concave up to concave down, and I flip it over a second time. The side that becomes visible after flipping is now mostly white, with scattered brown spots and a little bit of cooked-dough color in the middle.

Now I move the pancake directly over the fire again and watch it puff up--which often started unevenly and took a while to finish. Sometimes I pushed it around at this stage to try to convince stubborn parts to inflate (though I suspect this didn't actually have much effect). It's already done cooking by this point, but there doesn't seem to be much harm in keeping it there longer.