*Peter Piper picked a peck of pita pockets*

Lunch Lady Blog - issue 4 - pita pockets

Lunch Ideas



  • 1 cup warm water 
  • 2 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 2 1/2 cups plain flour, extra for kneading
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil


  1. Mix water and yeast together, and let sit for about five minutes until the yeast is dissolved and bubbly. 
  2. Add flour, salt, and olive oil. Stir until a rough dough is formed.
  3. Sprinkle a little flour onto your bench and turn out the dough.
  4. Knead dough for about 5-7 minutes, until the dough is smooth and elastic. 
  5. Add more flour as needed to stop the dough from sticking to your hands and bench. Try not to use too much, as it’s better to use too little flour than too much. 
  6. Clean the mixing bowl and coat the inside with a little olive oil. Pop the dough in the bowl and turn until it’s coated with the oil.
  7. Cover with a tea towel or plastic wrap and let rise until it’s doubled in size, 1-2 hours (this will depend on how warm the room is).
  8. Gently deflate the dough and place on lightly floured bench. 
  9. Divide the dough into 8 equal pieces and flatten each piece into a thick disk.
  10.  Sprinkle with a little more flour and then cover them with a tea towel or plastic wrap wrap until you’re ready to cook them.
  11. Using a floured rolling pin, roll one of the pieces into a 20cm circle. 
  12. Lift and turn the dough often to make sure it doesn’t stick to the bench.
  13. Warm a heavy skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Put a little oil in the pan and wipe off the excess with paper towel
  14. Place a rolled-out pita on the skillet and bake for 30 seconds, until you see bubbles starting to form. 
  15. Flip and cook for 1-2 minutes on the other side, until large toasted spots appear on the underside. 
  16. Flip again and cook another 1-2 minutes to toast the other side. The pita should start to puff up during this time; if it doesn’t or if only small pockets form, try pressing the surface of the pita gently with a clean towel. Keep cooked pitas covered with a tea towel while cooking any remaining pitas.
Lunch Lady Recipe - lamb koftas - issue 4



  • 500g lamb mince
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tbsp fresh mint, chopped
  • oil for brushing


  1. In a large mixing bowl, using your hands, mix together all the ingredients until well blended. 
  2. Divide into 8 balls, then roll each ball on a bench to make them into little ovals.
  3. Heat a griddle until hot and cook for 3-4 mins each side.



  • 2 cans chickpeas
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1 1/2 tbsp flour
  • 1 3/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • pinch of ground cardamom
  • peanut oil, for frying


  1. Drain and rinse chickpeas. 
  2. Pop them into your food processor with the rest of the ingredients.
  3. Pulse the ingredients together until a coarse meal forms. 
  4. Scrape down the sides to push the mixture down. Process until it’s somewhere between the texture of couscous and a paste. You want it to be able to hold together in a ball.
  5. Once the mixture reaches the desired consistency, pop into a bowl and stir with a fork. Remove any chickpea chunks that the processor missed.
  6. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and put in the fridge for 1-2 hours.
  7. Fill a fry pan with peanut oil to a depth of 5cm. Heat the oil slowly over medium heat. 
  8. While your waiting for the oil to heat up, form falafel mixture into patties using wet hands. 
  9. Try frying just one falafel first, a tester. The falafels should take 2-3 minutes on either side to brown. If it browns faster, the oil is too hot. Cool it down slightly and try again. When you’ve perfected the temperature, fry the falafels in batches until golden brown on both sides.



  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, grated
  • 450g chicken mince
  • 1 tbsp fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 tbsp fresh thyme, finely chopped
  • 50g panko breadcrumbs
  • salt and pepper, to season
  • plain flour, to coat balls
  • sunflower oil, for frying


  1. Heat olive oil in a pan and sauté the onion for about 3 mins over a low–medium heat. 
  2. Remove pan from the heat and allow the onions to cool down.
  3. Mix apple, chicken, sautéed onion, thyme, parsley and breadcrumbs and mix together well with your hands. Season with a little salt and pepper.
  4. Form chicken mix into 20 small balls.
  5. Roll in flour and fry in shallow oil for about 5 mins until lightly golden and cooked through.
  6. Place on a paper towel to absorb any excess oil.


This article is from Issue 4 of Lunch Lady, you can buy the back issue here.

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