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When even Iron Man can't resist the siren song of shawarma, you know it must be something special. The Middle Eastern sandwich, which famously formed the final scene in the first "Avengers" film, usually consists of layers of rotisserie-cooked meat, vegetable fillings and a spicy sauce, all tucked into a rolled-up flatbread. You can assemble shawarma at home with store-bought pita bread, but making your own flatbread yields a more flexible and tasty wrap to encase the exotic treat.

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Add a few scoops of flour to your mixing bowl. Mix in a spoonful of salt until the two ingredients are well-combined. Make a hole in the center of the flour mixture.

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Whisk together 5 parts room lukewarm water to 1 part olive oil. You'll need about half as much liquid mixture as you have of the flour mixture, or perhaps a bit less.

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Pour the liquid mixture into the well at the center of flour mixture. Add it slowly, stopping to push the flour into the center of the well to combine the dry and wet ingredients. Add more of the water-oil mixture, as needed, until a sticky dough forms.

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Knead the shawarma bread dough on a floured surface until it becomes soft and stretchable. Once it reaches this smooth state, roll it into a ball shape. Add a bit of olive oil into the mixing bowl, put the dough ball into the bowl and roll it around in the olive oil.

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Leave the shawarma bread dough to rest for at least 4 hours after covering the bowl with plastic.

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Divide the room-temperature dough into even-sized pieces, then roll each piece into a ball. The balls should be about the size of golf balls.

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Leave the balls of shawarma bread dough to rest under a clean dish towel for about 15 minutes.

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Roll the balls into circles that are about 1/16-inch thick, and no larger than the inside of your skillet. As you're rolling the last of the dough, preheat your skillet over medium-high heat.

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Drizzle olive oil into the preheated pan and tilt it so that the oil spreads evenly across the surface of the pan.

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Set the first shawarma bread dough circle into the pan. Cook the dough for 1 to 2 minutes per side.

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Transfer the cooked shawarma bread onto a clean large plate and continue cooking the other dough circles. Stack the cooked breads as they leave the skillet, until all have been cooked.

Tip

Possible shawarma sauces include hummus or a tahini-yogurt mixture.

Fillings to layer over the meat might include pickled cabbage or Middle Eastern-style relish, fresh shredded lettuce and diced tomatoes.

To assemble shawarma sandwiches, spoon the roasted meat onto one side of the cooked round bread. Layer the other fillings over it, then spoon on the sauce. Roll the flatbread up tightly.

Warning

Shawarma bread is somewhat fragile. Avoid piling the layers too high before rolling the sandwiches.

Roll the shawarma up as tightly as possible to keep the sauces and fillings from spilling out.

About the Author

Ellen Douglas

Ellen Douglas has written on food, gardening, education and the arts since 1992. Douglas has worked as a staff reporter for the Lakeville Journal newspaper group. Previously, she served as a communication specialist in the nonprofit field. She received her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Connecticut.