Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Plier Bread: EZ home made puffed pita

Or Plierbread, so named because I use pliers (usually my beloved Leatherman, 'Claws', inexplicably missing here) to move the oven rack. This make an Israeli style pita bread (hand sized and thick; it's sandwich bread), as opposed to several others (bedouin, yemenite) mentioned elsewhere. And it uses store made pizza crust dough.

Pita puffs because the bottom and top are cooked simultaneously, and the two crusts pull away from the middle. My setup, picture, has a cast iron serving plate in the bottom of a big, cheap aluminum roasting pan. The roasting pan nearly seals to the roof of my oven, though I'm sure I void the warranty here.

I divide a bag of store made pizza dough (regular and whole wheat) into four equal portions, roll flat in flour, and let them sit for a couple hours. Shortly before dinner, I let the roasting pan contraption heat up until the plate is smokin' hot, grab the rack with pliers, pull it out, drop in a flat of dough, push it in, and maybe flip once. The heating element cooks the top, and the cast iron cooks the bottom.

Just keep an eye on it until you get your timing down, and make sure it's not going to catch fire from the heating element. Good luck... if anyone tries this, send me pictures. Photos: my pita oven, and served with the Gerbiquitous pickles (see 'The Miflard Principle'), and home made armenian grape leaves a la Eastern Lamejun in Belmont, to be posted later.

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