Mediterranean Pita Flatbread

by | Bread Muffins & Crackers

Traditional Mediterranean pita flatbread with fresh herbs from the summer garden, or dried spices. A favorite with sandwiches, dips or tapas spreads!

pita flatbread
Pita Flatbread

Flatbread vs Pita Bread

Most often flatbread is flour and liquid quickly mixed into a batter that cooks fast on top the stove or over fire.

It may be a little crunchy, like a cracker or softer, like a bread. Texture will depend on the amount of flour and oil in the mixture. 

Pita is traditionally thicker than flatbread. Though flat, it is a softer, bread-like texture, made with yeast. 

Traditional Flatbread

Dating back to ancient nomad times of the Middle East, bread was quickly mixed, left to sit out in the sun to ferment a little. When dinner time rolled around, it was cooked on open fire, often on a flat metal plate set on top of the fire. 

Think of a pancake type of batter; flour, yogurt (often soured sheep milk) and some type of fat. 

Depending on the meal it was to be eaten with, honey or herbs would be added to the batter.

Mediterranean Tapas Meal
Mediterranean Tapas Meal

Ancient Tradition Of Pita Bread

Pita bread was an important aspect of the meals eaten for one very good reason; no forks! 

A little leaven in the batter and it creates a softer yet more sturdy type of bread. Tearing off pieces of pita and using to scoop (like a little spoon), the food for eating was the way it was done; or else you eat with your fingers. 

My herb garden
My Herb Garden

Mediterranean Herbs and Spices

Dough for either pita or flatbread is basically flour and water. Fat added to the batter, such as olive oil, made for a softer texture. 

Herbs are either added to the batter, sprinkled on top or both. Garden fresh herbs are what I use during the summer months. Oregano and fennel grows like weeds in my yard but I have to cultivate parsley more delicately. 

homegrown herbs
Homegrown Herbs

Garden-to-Table cooking is what I love most during the summertime. Winter spices, for Mediterranean flavors, are also delicious especially when they are homemade, like Za’atar, which is delicious on top of pita. 

What To Serve With Pita Flatbread

Goodness me, do we have enough room on this page to tell you all the devious dishes to serve with Pita flatbread!

In fact, which cooking on The Great American Recipe program with PBS, I made sure that I made some type of bread with as many dishes as I could. 

Episode 2, I made Shakshuka on the show and believe you me, I was determined to make flatbread to serve with it, in under 60-minutes! I did and the judges were wowed that I made my own bread to dip in the egg!

Here are just a few of the traditional Mediterranean dishes I will serve a pita or flatbread with:

And yes, I have even created a recipe for Pumpkin Pita. A definite for the Autumn months and serve it with Pumpkin Hummus drizzled with chili oil!

How To Make Pita Flatbread

First, we must make the dough of flour, water, yeast and olive oil. Yes, I put even a sprinkle of yeast in my flatbread, let it sit 20 minutes and cook it on top the stove. Keeps it from taking on the texture of a cracker. 

Secondly, the dough, once it rises, gets cut into little golfball (or tennis, depending on how large you want), and rolled flat and oval. 

Thirdly is the cooking and this, for me, is what makes pita different from baking bread. On top of the stove, on a hot, oiled cast-iron griddle, I quick sear both sides of the pita. Pop it in the oven for 10 – 12 minutes to bake and it is perfect!

Last, is the toppings. While the pita is hot, brush a little olive oil, sprinkle coarse salt and add with dry spices or fresh chopped herbs. Scrumptious!

homemade Za'atar ingredients
Homemade Za’atar Ingredients

Ingredients Needed

  • Yeast
  • Sugar
  • Salt
  • Olive oil
  • Water
  • Flour
  • Coarse salt
  • Fresh herbs (optional)
  • Za’atar (optional)
Traditional or Spelt dough
Traditional or Spelt Dough

Equipment Needed

  • Mixing bowl
  • Wooden spoon
  • Measuring cup
  • Measuring spoons
  • Basting brush
  • Rolling pin
  • Stovetop griddle or cast iron pan
  • Cutting board (for herbs)
  • Knife
  • Stovetop of burner
  • Oven

Mediterranean Pita Flatbread

Recipe by rdaumitCourse: Bread Muffins u0026amp; CrackersCuisine: Mediterranean
Servings

6

servings

Traditional Mediterranean pita flatbread with fresh herbs from the summer garden, or dried spices.

Ingredients

  • Yeast – 2 teaspoons

  • Sugar – 2 teaspoons

  • Salt – 1 tablespoon

  • Olive oil – 2 tablespoons, more for basting

  • Water – 1 1/4 cup

  • Flour – 4-5 cups, more to roll out

  • Coarse salt – 1 tablespoon

  • Fresh herbs – 1/4 cup (optional)

  • Za’atar – 1 tbsp (optional)

Directions

  • Pour water in a bowl. Sprinkle yeast and sugar on top. Let sit 5 minutes to form a foam. Add salt and oil. Stir.
  • Slowly add flour and stir until it becomes difficult to stir. Now it’s time to get a little messy. With your hands, begin to press added flour into the dough, adding flour until it forms a lovely plump ball.
  • In a clean bowl, rub a little oil to glaze the bowl. Place the dough ball in the oiled bowl, cover and let it sit in a warm (not hot) place to rise. It will rise in about one hour. A little longer in cooler climate.
  • Once it rises, sprinkle a little flour on top, and punch it down. On a floured surface roll out the dough. Cut into 12 pieces and shape into flat/oval pieces about 1/4 inch thick.
  • Preheat oven to 400 and heat a cast iron griddle on top the stove.
  • Brush the griddle with oil, place the pita on the hot pan for a minute on each side. Remove and place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.
  • Bake for 10 – 12 minutes, until golden on top.
  • While the pita is still warm, brush again with olive oil, sprinkle with coarse salt and add the spices or herbs of your choice.

Recipe Video

Notes

  • Pita freezes well. To reheat, just pop in the microwave for about 25 seconds so the pita becomes soft again. 
  •  
Mediterranean Pita Flatbread
Mediterranean Pita Flatbread
 

My Muffin Madness

 

In my family, I’ve always been known as the ‘Muffin Queen’. Out of necessity, I created muffins for breakfast, lunch, on the go snacks, sometimes dinner and a sweet yet healthyish treat for dessert!

Featured On:

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Subscribe
Notify of
guest

0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Related Posts

Healthy Chocolate Banana Bread

Healthy Chocolate Banana Bread

Chocolate and bananas were meant for each other, whisk them into a bread with healthy olive oil, spelt and oat flour and you’ve got a secret you will want to share! Healthy Chocolate Banana Bread Healthy Healthy Healthy! Yes, I’m a health nut. Have been since I was a...

read more
My Muffin Madness Cookbook

My Muffin Madness Cookbook

A Muffin Cookbook unlike any you've ever seen! My Muffin Madness Cookbook has everything you'll ever need in a muffin. The Best Muffin Cookbook You'll Want To Own Madness and Necessity In my family, I’ve always been known as the ‘Muffin Queen’. Out of necessity, I...

read more