What is a pita in the Middle East know from small to large. In the Arab and Mediterranean countries, this ordinary bread is considered to be both daily bread and flour delicacy and habitual fast food.
Pita is a flat, round unleavened bread, for baking of which both high-grade wheat flour and wallpaper are used. This flour product has the right to be called a full-fledged meal, but in the Mediterranean and Middle Eastern region, where the pita itself enjoys unprecedented popularity, it is perceived only as an appetizing package, an addition to this dish. As there is no New Year in Ukraine without huge salad bowls of Olivier and fur coats, in the East it is impossible not to combine pita with hummus and tahini, with falafel, barbecue, salads, shawarma and many other goodies that can be “packed” into a warm soft carmeshek from tender dough .
This bread is extremely ancient: the first mention of it can be read in the Old Testament. In the original of this Hebrew Holy Scripture, the phrase “pat of bread” is mentioned, which can be translated from Hebrew as “loaf” or “big bread pita”. In general, "pita" is considered a diminutive form of the word "pat." However, in the Russian version of the translation, the writers did not begin to seek out the details and specify, but they went a simple way and used the word "bread".
The main distinguishing feature of pita from ordinary bread is the presence of a kind of “pocket” in the center of the flat cake, which can be opened by cutting the edge of the pita with a sharp knife and putting meat, salads and any other stuffing into it. How is this pocket formed? It’s all about the unusual baking technology. The dough of the future pit is placed on a hot surface and is baked under conditions of very high temperature conditions. It does not have time to rise evenly, as in an oven, and as a result, it stratifies, and a small cavity appears inside it. Water vapor, which is formed in the dough during baking pita, accumulates in this cavity in the middle of the cake, thus separating the layers of dough. This real pita, the average diameter of which is 15-20 cm, is baked in professional bakeries in a special oven, where it is placed near the fire.
However, not every pit has its own pocket. In addition to the traditional Mediterranean product, there are a number of varieties of this unleavened bread – these are Iraqi lafa, Druze pita, Georgian lavash, Indian chapata. In the French culinary encyclopedia "Larousse Gastronomique" it is noted that pita under various names can be found in Turkey, Greece and Italy, that is, all in the same region of the Mediterranean.
It would seem that this bread is fairly standard: flour "packaging" for meat or vegetable filling, and no more. However, resourceful cooks have come up with a dozen recipes, in which the pita appears in a variety of gastronomic "hypostases". For example, pita-tortilla: bread is cut into two circles, each of which is smeared with a favorite sauce, slices of tuna or salmon, greens, avocados and finely chopped vegetables are laid out on top. The cake with the filling is wrapped in a roll, fixed with a toothpick and baked in the oven for 5 minutes. For the speed and ease of cooking with this dish can only fight pit-iced eggs. Bread, as in the previous recipe, is cut into two circles, which are placed on the pan with the outer side. Next to him gently break an egg, so as not to break the yolk, and bake it like fried eggs.
A few large time-consuming require pita napoleon. Several flat cakes are cut into circles, each of which is spread with olive oil and sprinkled with chopped anchovies, mushrooms, greens, olives and cheese. All these plates are stacked one on top of the other, and a multi-tiered “cake” is obtained, which must be baked for about 10 minutes.
By the way, in Israel, slander of pita "Lenajev" (in Hebrew, this word means "wipe"). Jews put hummus and tahini on a plate, pick up the mixture with a piece of pita and send this delicacy to the mouth. This is in their language and is called “lengaev”, that is, to wipe the plate to a mirror-like purity.
The composition and beneficial properties of pita
In fairness, it is worth noting that the cake made from the wallpaper flour is an order of magnitude more nutritious than the pita, the dough of which is kneaded from the highest-grade flour. The fact is that the wallpaper flour (it is also called wholegrain) has a coarse grinding, thanks to which it contains absolutely all the valuable components of the grain. And this is his germ, and the aleurone layer, and the flower envelope. Therefore, wallpaper flour is saturated with such useful components as dietary fiber, which is often lacking in the nutrition of modern people, and fiber, which helps the body to be cleansed of toxic decomposition products and slags. In addition, it contains vitamins of group B and the most powerful antioxidant, which is also called “vitamin of youth” – this is vitamin E. Wallpaper paste is also rich in various minerals, mainly iron, silicon and zinc. These elements help to resist anemia, sterility, malignant tumors, catarrhal diseases and inflammatory processes.
Any bread made from wallpaper flour,