Posts Tagged ‘sandwich’

Homemade Whole Wheat Pita bread

Posted: August 6, 2012 by incidentalcooksuman in Baking, Bread
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 I always use to buy these from grocery store, whenever I wanted to make some pita sandwich. Finally, on this weekend I decided to try my hand at making them at home and here’s the result.

They turn out exactly the way they’re supposed to. And they were puffed up like a balloon getting filled with air when baking them in oven. I was getting so excited to see them getting puff up that I made an video of the process.

This pita bread recipe makes soft and fluffy pitas and thousand times better than the store-bought ones. Yeah I know, little bit of work but it’s all worth, the moment you bite one of these. Only disadvantage is whenever I made something at home, I get so used to the fresh and homemade ones, I don’t even touch the ones we get at grocery stores.

You can stuff the pockets with a filling of your choice and your pita sandwich is ready. I have made my pita sandwich with masala chickpeas with some onion-cucumber salad  topped with yogurt sauce…Yum!

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour ( I have used King Arthur Whole Wheat Flour)
  • 1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour (I have used Indian Sujata Atta)
  • 2¼ tsp instant yeast
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1¼ cups warm water
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Semolina or Cornmeal, for sprinkling

Method:

  • In a small bowl, combine the yeast, honey and water and stir gently to dissolve. Let the mixture stand until the yeast comes alive and starts to foam, 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Add the olive oil and salt to the yeast-honey-water mixture.
  • Dump the flour in a large mixing bowl, slowly adding the yeast mixture , knead the dough until smooth and no longer sticky.
  • Shape the dough into a large ball and coat lightly with Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Place in a bowl and cover with a clean kitchen towel. Set in a warm place to rise until doubled in size about 1 to 2 hour.
  • After the dough has risen,  time to knead back the dough again ,knead it to push all the air out of it.
  • Punch down the dough and divide into 8 equal parts. 
  • Roll each portion into a smooth ball .
  • On a lightly floured surface, roll each ball into a 6-inch circle and 1/4 inch thick discs. Transfer the discs to a baking sheet sprinkle with cornmeal. Repeat to complete the rest of the balls.
  • Cover the uncooked pita bread with the damp kitchen towel loosely and let them rest at room temperature for 30 minutes or until slightly puffy.
  • Meanwhile, heat oven to 500 degrees F and adjust oven rack to lowest position and place a baking sheet or cast iron skillet in oven.
  • With a wet hand generously rub the surface of the disc before putting it in oven. This help them to puff up nicely.
  • Transfer 1 pita bread on the skillet and bake until puffed and slightly golden in color(Mine took 3-4 minutes approx).Gently flip the pita using a spatula and bake the other side for 1 more minute or so. After couple of pitas on skillet, I used baking sheet to speed up the process and that worked well too.
  • Transfer to a cooling rack and let cool completely.  Repeat with the remaining pitas.
  • Stuff with your favorite stuffing and enjoy.

I am introduced to many cuisines after coming to US, one of which is mediterranean cuisine. Middle Eastern cuisine is known for its versatility, interesting ingredients and flavorful spices which is so much like Indian cuisine.The spices, the veggies, the flavors reminds me that I am having something Indian. Also, mediterranean cuisine is considered to be one of the healthiest cuisine.

Falafel is a fritters made from coarsely ground chick peas and this is usually served in pita bread as sandwich with some veggies and sauce. Falafel can also be served as a snack. Falafel pita sandwich is also considered to be street food of middle eastern countries and is a national dish of Israel.You can make falafel by baking if you counting on calories but I think it tastes great when its fried…:-)

Falafel and Pita Sandwich

Falafel and Pita Sandwich

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup dried chickpeas, soaked overnight
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 small onion, coarsely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds, toasted and ground
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 red bell pepper, coarsely chopped
  • 1 green chilli, devined and chopped
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 dried bread crumbs
  • salt to taste
  • Vegetable oil, for frying
  • 4 pita bread
  • Shredded lettuce,
  • sliced tomatoes, sliced seedless cucumbers ,thinly sliced red onion

For yogurt sauce

  • 1 cup yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds, toasted and ground
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon red chilli powder
  • salt to taste
  • fresh coriander leaves, chopped

In a small bowl combine yogurt, coriander leaves, salt, pepper, cumin powder and red chilli powder. Chill for at least 30 minutes.

Method:

  • Soak the chick peas overnight and the next morning drain the same and rinse throughly.
  • Cook the chickpeas with 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric powder in pressure cooker for about 6-7 minutes or until its slightly tender. Cool and drain the same.
  • Put the cooked chickpeas in a food processor and pulse to coarsely grind, stopping to scrape the sides . Also, there shouldn’t be any whole chickpeas remaining.
  • Transfer the chickpeas in a large mixing bowl, add baking powder, chopped onion, crushed garlic cloves, grounded cumin powder, coriander powder, red pepper flakes, chopped red bell pepper, green chillies, coriander leaves, lemon juice and salt to taste. Mix everything together. Add bread crumbs to the mixture so it holds together and can be shaped in desired forms. You can add more or less bread crumbs as needed.
  • Heat oil for deep-frying in heavy bottom skillet.
  • Roll the falafel mixture into small size balls, use an ice cream scoop to get them exactly in same sizes.
  • Carefully drop a few at a time into the hot oil, making sure they don’t stick to the bottom. Fry until the chickpeas fritters are a dark brown on all sides, turning as needed. Drain on a platter lined with paper towels.
  • Warm pita bread on both the sides, cut the same into halves to make pockets and put 3 fried falafel into each. Drizzle with the yogurt sauce and layer with lettuce, tomatoes, onions and cucumbers. Serve immediately.
Falafel and Pita Sandwich

Falafel and Pita Sandwich