Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Peasant Bread

I found this book at a library book sale a few years ago. At the time the kids and I had recently discovered we loved hummus. This book has a recipe and recipes for many other middle eastern foods. So I grabbed it and looked thru it and sat it on the shelf with my other cookbooks.

Cookbooks I love but I also know I will not use the ones that have many unusual ingredients, time consuming, and just plain weird. We are a plain jane kinda family when it comes to food. I am getting ready to put together a basic cookbook for myself and Ash. I might if I figure it out have it here in an ebook form but that is a fleeting thought that isn't high on the list.

I like recipes that I can do the basic or jazz it up when I want or need to. So I have very few cookbooks compared to some and they are very basic.

My kitchen counters this morning were covered in pitas. While Ash read about the civil war aloud to us I rolled them and then let them rise for 30 minutes. From there we heated the house up with a 500 degree oven. But they are yummy. I have made them before using this recipe
but this time I wanted more of them. So I used the one in my Pita cookbook which is the same just doubled. I also used agave instead of sugar since I want to stop using sugar.

The book talks about pitas being known as "peasant bread" and being around for a very LONG time. It tells of the desert tribes traveling by day and by night putting their tents up and starting a fire to cook these breads and using the goat milk that had been carried in goat skin bags all day and making a meal. This milk turned to yogurt or Labani. Its funny I have been making my own yogurt lately....

It also has a Feta recipe which I love and can make with my homemade yogurt.

These two pictures are Yguy and I making Falafel again from this book. We made the patties last night and Ash and I loved them the boys well..... They would be really good on a pita with marinated artichoke hearts, tomatoes, and bean sprouts hmmmmm. The new health food store in town sells sprouting seeds and I have been wanting to do my own and stop buying them at Walmart.

This afternoon not long ago I made tortillas for dinner. We are having enchiladas and as I was cooking them I thought of them being a "peasant bread" as well just in another part of the word.

To sit outside your home mixing flour/cornmeal, water, etc and frying flat dough on the same domed pan you most likely mixed it in on a open fire or close to it with your family around you talking of the day that just passed. Using ingredients you milled yourself, grew yourself, bartered for, or raised when it comes to meat. The simplicity of a peasant....no wander we as a society love these breads. Is it our instincts wanting that basicness, the sense of family gathered around, the simpleness of the act?

Here are some recipes I have used and the cheddar one I used today without the jalopeno peppers.

Cheddar Cheese tortillas
Spinach Tortillas

For a few months I have craved that basicness in my life to toss out the clutter and to embrace the simple act of life. We complicate it so much following the crowd, going along with what society preceives as being the right thing to do, and thinking we need gossip and telling others what is best for them. I am a private person (go figure I blog!) and to have my life out there for those to judge or comment on is hard. I know as a family over the last year especially the last couple months I have gotten very protective of them and our privacy.

But as I have pulled them closer to my heart they have also bloomed and are growing. We are in a season of our lives where me sitting on the bleachers is a good thing and I am thriving on it as well. No it is not easy I am a control freak by nature and to sit and have them grow and bloom without me is hard but so enpowering for me.

The simple act of making peasant bread for a meal to be eatin together at the family table while we discuss the day that passed is basic and important... I am thankful for the simpleness of it and the experience of learning to go back to basics in our home, life, and family.


  1. I have been really wanting to make pitas but my oven just doesn't get hot enough. I think rennovating my kitchen to cram in a real oven probably defeats the purpose of simplifying life though *L*

  2. Mub...It is real tempting though...to redo your kitchen that is...The kitchen seems to be the center of the home and to not have the right tools can be so frustrating. :0)

  3. I have only made pitas once, I need to do it again. The nice thing about know how to make those kinds of breads is that it can be done easily on a grill or hot stone if for some reason you can't use your oven.

    I liked this post a lot....


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