Lately I’ve been really knocking out the family must haves. Around here pizza and cheese sandwiches are almost as popular as bagels. I’ve tried and failed to convince Riley that bagels that don’t come in bags are still good. I’ve made them from scratch, I’ve bought them from bakeries, and recently Stephen even brought home NY style bagels from a popular bakery near his work in jersey…no success. Riley seemed genuinely offended that I dare call “those things” bagels. They’re hard, and chewy, and why is that one weird looking? That one doesn’t have a hole? etc. So with the picky eaters and their idiosyncrasies I really don’t feel like having massive failures. We don’t have the cash to waste on my “great ideas”, and my ego is just becoming bruised quite frankly. I’m really knee deep in self pity some days, pouting around wah! boo boo! my food sucks, my pictures suck, they just want junk food and I’m not doing that… ugh. why do I bother? I should just hang up my apron, pick up some bon bons and turn on the young and the restless…call it a day.
Alas I don’t, I really cant stomach “women’s entertainment”, the crying, the drama the …smut it all really annoys me. I really cant relate to anything or anyone in life without food involved. I find myself walking around the house bored, yes I could and should clean it but I don’t want to damn it. Ultimately I’m always back in the kitchen. Food, well its really my primary connection to life…well besides my kids. Food is a connection to everyone, everywhere. Its the one thing no living being can do without and quite frankly the art of making food although its trendy and all the rage, seems to be a forgotten art for at home cooks. People seem to have transitioned into wanting to buy good food instead of actually making it. With all of my self-loathing aside at the end of the day online blogs really bring me around, and really inspire me to shut up and cook. I really do feel like my blog connects me with other people who have food blogs, and its become slightly personal I suppose. Its something we have in common and although your not my neighbor, our kids probably won’t play together, you would
probably think I’m strange if we’d actually met, but hey we may never speak to one another but we have got something in common. Kermit had the rainbow connection, I’ve got the foodie connection. I get something in my head and think WOW, that’s good. Even if no one reads my babbling, I don’t know its a contribution.
What’s better to share than bread? Bread for me is the absolute symbol of homemade perfection. Its the ultimate symbol of life, rebirth and rejuvenation. Its something that takes just a little bit of preparation yet is the very best representation of an extra effort, its the little push over the edge, the extra smidge of love everyone needs. One thing I wanted to make recently was a gyro, I still want to try that eventually however middle of the road I decided…I’ve never had one before, Riley and Connor polished off the cucumbers already and I just dont really feel like doing that right now. So I made something based off of a standard pizza dough recipe, from what I’ve seen of pita its all the same dough and off I went to make these! There might be a more accurate name for them, but I’m not real sure I’ve seen anything quite like it. Reminds me of focaccia almost but the interior is not as dense. Slightly less time in the oven I’m sure it would have been the proper pita however I found these made the absolute perfect sandwich rolls and for Riley the simple addition of butter and gruyere and he was thrilled! Gourmet Cheesy bread? Well maybe not…gourmet but its yummy regardless.
Makes absolutely perfect sandwiches or garlic bread, cheese bread etc. Its also the very most basic pizza dough. Perfect for standard or thin crust pizza.
Basic Lean Dough:
2 teaspoons instant yeast (or 1 package)
1 cup warm water (110 degrees, no hotter)
2 cups Un-bleached all purpose flour
1 cup bread flour
1 teaspoon sea salt
- In a large bowl combine yeast and water. You can add a teaspoon or two of sugar if you’d like to really liven up the yeast. Sometimes I add 2 tablespoons of oil or butter. Allow to rest until it bubbles, about 5 minutes.
- With a large spatula or spoon combine 1 cup of bread flour, 1 cup of all purpose flour and salt. (you can also use a stand mixer with the bread hook attached) Stir to combine. Stir about 2-3 minutes. This will really get the gluten going. Stir in the remaining cup of flour.
- Place on a clean surface dusted with flour. Knead the dough 5-10 minutes. (about 4-5 minutes with the stand mixer) Keep the dough moving to prevent sticking. Once the dough forms a smooth and springy ball place it in an oiled bowl. Allow to rest until doubled in size.
To Bake Pita Rolls:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Divide dough into 6 equal portions. Pat them flat into 5 inch discs that are approximately 1/2″ thick. Place on a lightly dusted cookie sheet. You can use corn meal or flour if you don’t have it. Allow to rest until they start puffing back up a little. I found that mine were puffy enough to bake by the time I was finished working with all th dough. 10-15 minutes is fine. (I think regular pita is made by placing the rounds in the oven directly after flattening)
Place in the oven and bake 10 minutes for soft pita, 15 for chewy sandwich style rolls, bake until browned and sounds hollow when tapped.