Instructions

  1. Combine all of the pita ingredients (except the oil for brushing), and mix and knead to make a soft, smooth dough.

  2. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl or large measuring cup, cover it, and let it rise for 60 to 90 minutes, till it's just about doubled in bulk. Towards the end of the rising time, start to preheat your oven to 450°F, with a pizza stone on the bottom shelf, if you have one.

  3. To make the chopped salad: While the pita dough is rising, combine all of the salad ingredients, seasoning with salt and lemon juice to taste. Let the salad rest at room temperature while you prepare the pitas.

  4. Gently deflate the dough, and divide it into 8 pieces. Shape each piece into a ball, cover them, and let them rest for 10 minutes.

  5. Working with two pieces of dough at a time, roll each into a 6" circle. If you roll the dough about 7" wide, it'll shrink back to about 6".

  6. Carefully flop the dough onto the hot pizza stone. If you're not using a pizza stone, put it on an ungreased baking sheet, and put the baking sheet on your oven's bottom rack.

  7. Bake for 4 minutes. The pitas should rise enthusiastically. If they're on a stone, they'll probably puff up like balloons; if they're on a baking sheet, they'll still expand; just not as vigorously.

  8. Turn the pitas over, and bake for an additional 60 seconds.

  9. Remove them from the oven, and brush with your favorite olive oil, plain or flavored. Wrap lightly in a cotton towel, to keep them soft. Repeat with the remaining pieces of dough.

  10. Serve pitas with chopped salad.

Tips from our Bakers

  • Why the addition of orange juice in the pita dough? It helps tame the mildly tannic flavor of whole wheat. Can you leave it out? Of course; simply substitute water.