Using pita pockets to build a sandwich...
Sent my wife off to work this morning with a couple of lunch meat stuffed pita pockets.
What a struggle it was to make those *&%##&# things!
Anyone have the secret to building a nice sandwich using these pockets? Mine split and fell apart, didn't leave enough room for lettuce or cheese, and looked truly unappetizing!
I'm going to presume that these pitas aren't fresh and a little dry which would reduce their elasticity and lead to the splitting. If that's the case, then you can try microwaving them for a very short period of time to try and make them more moist/flexible.
Another way would be to treat the pita like a bread roll and basically cut the entire thing around into two parts and treat it like two slices of bread. Also - I do not recommend partially stuffing the pita (with the meat) and then later trying to add other ingredients (cheese/lettuce). Better to either make the entire sandwich ahead of time or contsruct right before eating.
Another point - make a pita sandwich by cutting/ripping the pita in half to make two "half pita" sandwiches is much easier than trying to fit fillings in from the top. Even when using a really fresh and flexible pita - when making a fully stuffed pita of falafel or shwaram it's comming to see the pita cut by a knife within the first third of the way down on only one side of the pita. Typically the pita is not split along the "seam".
Basically the wider the cut across, the easier it is to add fillings. Personally, I just cut the pita in half to get the widest opening for "stuff". But if you have a really fresh and elastic pita then you can try using a sharp knight to cut across in the top third of the pita on only one side.
I feel your pain. I've had the same trouble the last few years. Gone from the markets are those soft yet puffy breads that one could cut the top off then stuff with sturdy sandwich goodies... In fact one local producer makes a delicious multi-grain pita that's so soft I simply use it for a wrap sandwich. If you get a really large one you can slice it in half then stuff but that's too much bread for me.
If you decide to try and nukulate them to make them more pliable, try wrapping in paper or dish towel. It helps keep them from getting even drier.
Just a thought, are you sure that ti was a pocket pita? Not all pita are made as a pocket. (Granted, i have NO idea how either is made, only that some do, and some don't, have pockets.
The best thing to do is to package your wet ingredients in one sandwich bag and your meat at another. Nuke or toast the pita before lunch, heat up your meat (if so desired) and stuff with vegetables.
Thank you for the replies so far. Good observations!
The package was bought last Saturday. Son opened it up to make a couple of halves Sunday. So I'm thinking that the remainder had dried significantly before this morning.
I'm not going to re-try to stuff the remaining two halves with lunch meat. Just made egg salad to try the next stuffing effort.
Maybe there is a market for bigger pita pockets, I've always had the same problems with them and eventually gave up in frustration. I've had plenty of pita sandwiches in restaurants where the pitas were capable of being stuffed with a lot of food.