We owe much to Greece: democracy, money, our continent's name – and pita! What does this Greek bread have to do with austerity? Answers from our EU correspondent Georg Matthes in this episode of Baking Bread.
In the multimedia series "Baking Bread," EU correspondent Georg Matthes bakes 28 loaves from 28 EU countries and spices his baking instructions with typical anecdotes about each land. This time, he bakes Greek pita.
Tools of the trade:
And here is how you make pita – Greece's famous flatbread:
1. Mix all ingredients by hand and knead briefly. Then knead for eight minutes in a food processor. The dough should come loose from the bottom of the bowl.
2. Leave the dough overnight in a bowl lined with olive oil. Allow to rise at room temperature for at least 12 hours. The long fermentation process enhances the flavor.
3. Place the dough on a floured work surface and divide into 12 pieces (approx. 65g each). Carefully roll each piece into a ball. Allow to rest for a further 15 minutes.
4. Roll out four of the dough balls into flat circles approx. 15 cm in diameter.
5. Place the pita circles on a baking sheet lined with baking paper and leave to rest for 20 minutes under a kitchen towel.
6. Preheat the oven to 250°C. Place an empty baking tray in the oven. Unlike other breads, pita bakes best in a dry oven with no steam.
7. Transfer the pitas together with the baking paper onto the hot baking tray and bake for 6 min at 250°C. The pitas should inflate but not change color.
8. Enjoy your pita straight from the oven while it is still fresh and warm.