The wonderful “yeasty” aroma of Syrian bread baking in Sitto’s oven!

Published January 18, 2018

Syrian Bread…Khubiz! I can still catch the memory of that wonderful “yeasty” aroma of Syrian bread baking in Sitto’s oven! Sitto was like a baking “pro”…putting those rounds in…taking them out…stacking them on the table…covering them with sheeting. I remember that she would sometimes broil the tops for less than a minute to give them color. Sometimes, she’d splash some water on the tops with her fingertips to prevent them from burning. As she worked, her kitchen would be filled with the appetizing fragrance of warm bread, or “Khubiz,” as she called it in #Arabic.

And her oven! I remember that it was the smallest white porcelain stove, with a pull-out broiler drawer below. No modern appliances or contraptions in Sitto’s kitchen! She’d stack the rounds after they cooled and then put them in her aluminum lidded-pot in the pantry. In those days, she didn’t freeze them…there were too many of us and we gobbled them up at every meal before they even had a chance to get stale!

Those newly-arrived immigrant Syrian women were one-of-a-kind, so ambitious, family-loving, and frugal. They were so busy feeding their families and always, with a happy smile. That’s what Syrian Bread means to me! And that is why this Syrian Bread recipe is the very first recipe in these cookbooks. It is a tribute to our wonderful ancestors! Yes, we can buy pita bread today. And if you’re lucky enough to be near a Middle Eastern grocer, the Arab bread is great. But if you haven’t tried to produce these homemade breads, you are missing out on one of life’s fragrant and delicious accomplishments!