It's -1 degree outside right now and there aren't many things that keep me warm despite the fact I'm constantly bundled in layers upon layers of clothing and huddled as close to my space heater as possible! BUT...I've found something that helps and is delicious. Baking bread. The kneading, the baking, the eating it once it's out of the oven...everything contributes to my overall warmth and the warmth of our apartment, so I'm into it! Plus, something about making bread from scratch is really rewarding and has got me hooked. It started with handmade cinnamon rolls, then came the french bread...and here I am again with pictures from my most recent adventures with kneading and rising and punching and rising again! It's hard to pinpoint what keeps me wanting to make more, but I think it's a combination of the smell, the feeling of kneading it, watching it double in size and knowing that I am MAKING something special from flour and water. Plus there's the whole thing where people have been making and breaking bread for thousands of years that also makes me feel really cool and connected with the world. It's an investment of time (do it on the weekend!), but the fruit of the labor is worth it.
We had an abundance of hummus last week, so naturally pita bread needed to happen. I found this recipe, rolled up my sleeves and got to work! This version really did call for a lot of rising time, but the final pictures looked so soft and fluffy that I couldn't resist. If you are going to do it, make sure you plan for the process to take a couple of hours.
In the end we had soft delicious pitas that we have tried as the base for a turkey and cheese sandwich and with white bean hummus (pictured above), both with successful outcomes. My bread didn't come out having air bubbles for pockets, but that didn't bother me at all.
If you have a favorite type of bread to make, please share it below! I'd love to see what your specialties are!
Stay warm! Caitlin