Monday, January 16, 2012

Better-Than-Pita Grill Bread

Grilled pita bread - Khubz

Khubz is the Arabic bread known as pita in other parts of the world.
Usually this is made in the traditional wood burning oven. It can also be made in the modern oven.
Since I dont have either, I tried this lovely grilled bread from Epicurious

Credit: Epicurious


2 cups all-purpose flour plus additional for dusting
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon fast-acting yeast from 1 (1/4-oz) package such as Fleischmann's Rapid Rise yeast
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon warm water (105-115°F)
1/4 cup canola or vegetable oil
1 tablespoon beaten egg

Special equipment: a lightly oiled ridged grill pan, cast-iron skillet, or griddle


Whisk together flour (2 cups), sugar, salt, and yeast in a bowl until combined. Whisk together water, oil, and egg in another bowl until combined well, then stir into flour mixture until a shaggy dough forms. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead, working in just enough additional flour to keep dough from sticking, about 2 minutes (dough will not be smooth). Form dough into a ball and put in an oiled bowl, turning to coat, then let rest in bowl, uncovered, in a warm draft-free place 10 minutes.
Note: I required almost 1/2 cup water and 1/2 cup oil to get a dough. To be safe and to get the required consistency, first add 1/4 cup each and then add little by little as you go.

Khubz dough

Cut dough into 10 pieces and form each into a ball. Working with 1 piece at a time, flatten balls, then roll out into 6-inch rounds (less than 1/8 inch thick) on lightly floured surface with a lightly floured rolling pin.

Rolling out Khubz

Mine of course turned in shapes other than rounds. To ensure that you get a pocket in the middle, fold it in half as shown below, and roll out again.

Folding Khubz

Preheat grill pan or skillet over moderately high heat just until smoking, then reduce heat to moderate and grill bread rounds, 1 at a time, turning once, until marks appear and bread is cooked through, about 2 minutes. It will puff up on the hot pan and deflate once taken off the pan. Keep breads warm, wrapped in a cloth napkin.

Cooks' notes: If you have a 2-burner grill pan, you can grill 2 bread rounds at a time.
Bread can be made 1 day ahead and cooled completely, then kept in an airtight container at room temperature. Reheat bread, loosely wrapped in foil, in a 350°F oven until heated through.