Wholemeal pittas, seeded buns and a hypertension intervention


So yesterday I went with husband to see his doctor. I have threat promised to do this for a while, but wanted to give my husband the illusion of authority and empowerment. I have sent a few messages and helpful suggestions to the doctor through husband before, but they haven't really seem to have fallen on fertile ground. So now I have had enough, the doctor is just not taking husband's blood pressure situation seriously enough, so time for face-to-face wifely intervention / meddling.

A bowl of classic Italian minestrone soup with a seeded wholemeal bun
A bowl of minestrone with a seeded wholemeal bun
Surprisingly the doctor didn't seem over-the-moon to see me walking in husband's wake into his office. Which I think is crap. I work in medical technology and know that there is nothing to improve compliance and health outcomes like the support of a loving spouse. Anyway this one, not so delighted.

He also didn't seem to be particularly pleased with my thorough knowledge of the NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) guidelines on clinical management of primary hypertension in adults. Or my detailed log of husband's blood pressure results from the previous 4 weeks. Or my obvious mathematical modelling skills as I presented him the averages and medians and modes. I'm glad I didn't make them into ppt slides to present from my laptop, that would have been a waste of time with this unappreciative individual.

I was even being a lot friendlier and nicer than I felt (=stapling the NICE guidelines onto his forehead). And not for his sake, but for husband's because he gets a bit uncomfortable when I staple stuff on people's foreheads. I didn't even threaten to sue or anything.

But I wouldn't budge. Something had to be done. If there was nothing he could do about it he should send my husband to someone who could. Or carry me out of his office.

He made the sensible decision and referred husband to the hospital to be set up for ambulatory BP monitoring and promised a subsequent referral to a neurologist for his headaches.

So I didn't make a new friend exactly, but I got what I wanted. I don't give a shit about the doctor and his bruised ego, husband's health is more important. I don't even care that he attempted to patronise me which I think is part of the curriculum in some med schools. This time it didn't work for him much. His final attempt to exert his power and shut me up was saying he'd like to hear his patient's view on the referrals. That would actually be completely reasonable, but as he has so far refused to listen to anything he has to say, I'm not sure where this sudden interest came from. The patient's views in this instance of course were same as mine (thank you my lovely loyal husband). I was adult enough not to smirk at the good doctor or do the thumb on nose and wiggly finger thing or an L sign on forehead.

I have a lot of respect for the medical profession, I have always had good care myself whenever I have needed it. It's a tough job and so important. My own lovely father, my hero and idol, is a wonderful physician who committed all his working life to helping people. But he would always listen to the patient and the worried wife.

After the appointment we went to the gym. I forgot my water bottle so husband kept watering me on the treadmill, which I took to be a sign of his gratitude for fighting his corner. After the gym I wanted to make us a tasty wholesome dinner of oven baked falafels with homemade wholemeal pitta bread which I'd made earlier in the week. The plan was to share the falafel recipe.

Wouldn't that have been the perfect ending to a health related post. Unfortunately the falafel turned our really dry. Husband almost suffocated in one of them and later complained about heartburn and constipation which really was not the intention after all that hard work on behalf of his health. So I don't want to share the recipe really. Unless anyone wants to suffocate someone, then pm me and we can have a chat. Cheaper than a hitman.

Wholemeal pitta bread with falafel
Pitta trying to swallow an enormous dry fucker of a falafel

So I'll just share my fab idea of doing some healthy wholemeal seeded rolls and plump pitta breads at one go!

Wholemeal pittas and seeded buns recipe (Makes: 4 pittas and 6 rolls)

150g strong white bread flour
350g wholemeal flour
1.5 tsp salt
7g instant yeast
2 tbsp olive oil
3 dl lukewarm water
Extra flour for dusting
1 dl of mixed seeds


Add the flour into a large mixing bowl with the salt and yeast. Mix and make a well in the middle. Add the oil and most of the water. Mix the ingredients together by hand or using a wooden spoon. Add the remaining water a little at a time, you might not need all, until the dough is soft and sticky. If too dry add a little water.

Tip the dough onto a floured work surface and knead for 5-10 minutes. The dough is ready when it stops being sticky and forms a nice smooth ball. Put the dough into a bowl and cover with a clean kitchen towel until it has doubled in size (about an hour or more).


Whole wheat pitta breads

Preheat your oven to 225C. For the pittas place a baking tray in the oven to get hot. If you have a pizza stone use it.

Tip the dough back onto a floured work surface. Divide the dough into two, place the other half back to the bowl and divide the remaining half into 4 equal balls. Flatten each ball and using a rolling pin, roll into an oval. Don't overdo it, just a gentle roll and leave it to minimum 0.5 cm thick. If you work the dough too much at this stage or make it too thin it might not puff up!

Take the hot tray or pizza stone out of the oven and dust lightly with flour. Lay the pittas on. Sprinkle the oven with some water to create steam to help the pittas to puff up. Bake until the breads puff up and get some colour around the edges - about 5-10 minutes.

Once out of the oven wrap them in a clean kitchen towel. Eat immediately or keep for a few days and heat for a couple of minutes in the oven before serving.

Seeded buns

Tip the rest of the dough onto the floured work surface. Add a handful (1 dl or so) of mixed seeds, pumpkin, linseed, sesame, poppy etc. Knead the dough gently until the seeds are incorporated. Divide the dough into 6 balls and place on a baking sheet. Press some seeds on top of each roll and leave to prove for about 20-30 minutes or until they have risen nicely. Bake for 8-10 minutes until they are lovely and golden on top.

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