This cheese stuffed pita bread is a Middle Eastern classic found in Middle Eastern bakeries. A generous portion of different cheeses is filled inside the pita bread before baking in the oven. This simple and easy recipe works a treat for breakfast, snack or when you want a warm sandwich. These cheese-stuffed pita pockets also make great kids’ school lunch box sandwiches.
Yeast - In a small bowl combine lukewarm water, yeast, honey, and oil. Stir well and leave to rest/prove for 5 minutes until foamy.Pro-tip- instant yeast does not need to be activated but I like to ensure my yeast is good and working for me. You may choose to add all ingredients directly to the flour.
Combine - In the large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer with the dough hook attachment, combine the flour and salt. Add the yeast mixture and knead until all the flour is incorporated. Scrape the sides of the bowl. Pro tip - do not add flour unless necessary. First, scrape the sides of the bowl and let it all come together. You may need the additional flour for kneading, no more.
Knead - Continue to knead for 3 to 4 minutes on a stand mixer or 5 to 6 minutes by hand until you have a soft, elastic dough. When you press the dough with your fingers - the dough should spring back.Pro tip - We want soft, light, and fluffy pita, and this is only possible when the dough is soft, elastic, yet slightly sticky
Rise - Shape the dough into a ball and place it in an oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and rest in a warm place for about 60 to 90 minutes or until double in volume.Pro-tip - in winter you may need 90 minutes or more but in summer the dough may double in 45 minutes. If you can't attend to it at that moment. De-gas, reshape, and let double in volume again.
Divide - When double in volume transfer to a well-dusted floured surface. De-gas, reshape into a ball. Then roll into a small log. Using a dough scraper divide this log into 4 portions and then each of those portions into 3 again. This should give you 12 portions. Shape each portion into a smooth ballPro-tip - I am making 12 pita bread but you can make these bigger by dividing the dough into fewer portions.
Roll, fill, bake
Cheese filling - In a medium bowl combine all the different kinds of cheeses and mix well. Add the onions, garlic, and herbs and combine well again. Season with salt and pepper Pro tip - note that some cheeses like feta, mozzarella, and parmesan have salt in them.
Fill - Using a rolling pin, roll each dough ball into a 6-inch disc. Place the pita on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Place about 2 to 3 tablespoon of the filling on one half of the pita. Lightly brush the edges with water and fold the other half over the potatoes. Press gently to hold the edges.
Oven - Heat the oven to 425°F/ 220°C / Gas mark 7 for at least 20 mins. Pro tip - baking these on a hot pizza stone will make lovely crisp edges.
Bake - Brush the proofed pitas with an egg wash. Sprinkle with black sesame seeds (white will also work). Place the baking tray on the center rack. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes until puffed up and golden.
Cool them on a wire rack for 10 mins. Then keep them wrapped in a kitchen cloth/towel or cheesecloth to keep them soft.
Pita bread can dry out quickly so always keep them wrapped.
Since these have a filling in them, stored them in the fridge or freezer.
If you are going to consume them in a day, the fridge will work any longer than that the bread will dry out.
I prefer not to keep them in the fridge to prevent the dough from drying out.
You can place them in ziplock bags and freeze them for a week.
If wrapped well in aluminum foil they will stay for up to a month in the freezer.
The nutrition information and metric conversion are calculated automatically. I cannot guarantee its accuracy. If this data is important to you please verify with your trusted nutrition calculator. Thank you