Sourdough Pita Bread

I have a confession, I’ve been the worst sourdough mom and even worse blogger lately. I originally started baking bread and blogging after quitting my full-time job in August of 2018. I lost my passion for my profession (public relations), wanted to take a break and reassess the direction I wanted to take my career. Almost exactly a year later, a couple chance encounters have led me to jump back into the workforce. I started my own PR, social media and copywriting consultancy and have picked up a few clients. Due to this new development, I’ve ignored my starter and haven’t been baking as much as of late. 

These pitas are some of the last bread that I baked. I initially didn’t intend on posting this recipe but they turned out so well that I tested the recipe multiple times and decided to post it on my blog! 

These pitas are leavened with water kefir, but you can easily create this using the sourdough starter you already have on hand. As I’ve been a neglectful sourdough mom, my starter has developed an extremely acidic flavor which tastes great in plain loaves, but is too robust for enriched doughs like this pita recipe. If your starter has a more delicate flavor, feel free to use it here, or put together a quick starter using my fruit water starter method. 

Don’t skip the whole wheat flour in this recipe. The whole wheat lends a really delicious nutty flavor to these pitas, and creating these with 100% plain flour made for lackluster pitas without much texture or flavor. 

Finally, I found that making these pitas in a skillet or cast iron pan worked much better than baking them. I like the texture and crust that these developed on the pan, and I didn’t have to fiddle with opening and closing the oven door when trying to flip these. I also still got the signature pocket even with making these in a pan. 

Disclosure: Please note that this post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This in no way impacts my recommendations.

Now onto the recipe! 

Formula

Water Kefir Starter 

QuantityIngredientsBaker’s %
40 gWater kefir100%
20 gAll-purpose flour50%
20 gWhole wheat flour50%

Sourdough Starter 

QuantityIngredientsBaker’s %
10 gSourdough starter (100%) 28%
35 gWater100%
20 gWhole wheat flour57%
15 gAll-purpose flour 43%

Dough 

QuantityIngredientsBaker’s %
260 gAll-purpose flour84%
50 gWhole wheat flour16%
200 gWater64%
80 gWater kefir starter or Sourdough starter46%
6 gSalt2%
13 gSugar4%
15 gOlive oil5%

Instructions

Make Starter 

The up to 8 hours or the night before you’re ready to mix your dough, make your water kefir or sourdough starter. 

Place in a warm place and allow to rise (or double).

Mix Dough

After your starter has matured, in a medium sized bowl combine water and starter, and stir until starter has completely dissolved. 

Add oil, sugar, and salt into starter mix until fully combined.

Stir in whole wheat flour and all-purpose flour until all the flour is hydrated and the mixture forms the shaggy dough. Put mix aside and allow to rest for 30 minutes. 

With clean hands, stretch and fold dough in bowl until it becomes smooth and elastic (about 10 minutes). Add small amounts of flour (not too much) until the dough is only slightly tacky and no longer extremely sticky. 

When the dough becomes manageable, turn it out onto a clean work surface and knead until it feels strong, looks smooth and passes the windowpane test. Alternatively, mix in stand mixer using a dough hook. 

Bulk Fermentation

Gather dough into a lightly oiled bowl, cover and allow to rise until doubled at room temperature (about 2 to 6 hours depending on how cold or hot your room is) 

Cold Retardation

Once doubled, place dough into an airtight container and allow to proof overnight in the refrigerator. This allows the flour to ferment and continue to develop flavors without becoming over proofed 

Final Proof 

The next day, punch the air out of the dough and turn out onto a clean lightly-floured work surface. 

Divide dough into 6 even pieces. Form dough into tight even balls, cover with a damp towel and allow to rest for 15 minutes. 

After rest period roll each piece of dough into an 8-inch circle, only about 1/4 inch/.5 cm thick. Thickness will have a huge effect on whether or not you get that well-coveted pocket. 

Cover with a damp towel, and allow to rise until puffy (around 2 to 4 hours depending on temperature)

Cook

When your dough is fully proofed, heat a skillet or a cast-iron pan on high-heat.  

Place 1 to 2 pieces of dough on skillet, allow to cook for 30 seconds or until slightly puffy. Flip and cook for 1 minute, flip again and cook for another 30 seconds. Be careful not to overcook or your pitas may become too dry and tough.

Place baked pitas onto a towel-lined bowl to keep warm. Cook remaining pitas. 

Serve warm and enjoy with hummus, as a wrap or on its own.  

Please share this recipe if you enjoyed it! Remember to post a photo and tag me or use #makeitdough when you make this delicious recipe, so I can check out your bake.

Follow me on Instagram @MakeItDough or like Make It Dough on Facebook for more sourdough and baking ideas.

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