Mama Pita — Home Baker Caterer Based In Tinley Park
You can all thank me for this new addition to Mama Pita’s offerings 😋.
As I wrote in this month’s Coronavirus Chronicles blog post, I’ve been getting nostalgic these past couple of weeks or so. Craving foods that remind me of my childhood. I reached out to a new business called Mama Pita Homebaker, a homebased business here in Tinley Park. Though her brand tagline is Middle Eastern Sweets & Bread, she can cook just about anything. And since this is her business’ first year, she encourages special requests.
So what did I request? Cheese pita (otherwise called burek and/or gibinica), as pictured above. Pita is a traditional pastry common in Balkan and Middle Eastern cultures. It’s a philo dough filled roll (kind of like a strudel) and can come in any flavor (i.e. filled with cheese (salty), cherries (sweet), walnuts (nutty)) you name it. And guess what? Claudia (who is Mama Pita Homebaker) nailed the cheese pita; tasted 99.99% like my baka’s (Serbian for grandma).
Food is a powerful thing— it can bring you to tears and transport you back in time with one bite.
The cheese pita Claudia made brought me a comfort akin to the spirit of my baka hugging me for a brief moment. And at the same time I got to experience some other familiar (baklava, cheesecake, stuffed grapeleaves, tabouleh) and unfamiliar treats (Jerusalem bread (a really big bagel), chocolate rugalache, knafeh knishneh).
As you can see our dog Samantha had to try the cheese pita.
The above collage of photos are from my order, but check out all of Claudia’s offerings on her Facebook and Instagram accounts.
Back in December 2017 I wrote about baby shower locations, having found the place for my baby shower not too long before. I also wrote about how I hoped that the Tinley Park area and vicinity would become more diverse in its food scene because I felt like there was too much of the same few cuisine categories. Now almost 3 years later we have Mama Pita and a few other eating spots popping up. I hope this trend continues for the Chicago Southwest suburbs. Then there really won’t be much sense in driving far for different ethnic cuisines.
One more thing—You can get some of the popular Middle Eastern/Mediterranane dishes that Claudia makes from the also fairly new to the area Sem Sem and Pita Pita Mediterranean Grill. But there’s something about homecooked and just made that day from someone’s kitchen that can not be beaten. Also, if you have a special request, Claudia can accomodate unlike a larger and more commercial establishment. That’s the beauty of small business: they are nible and can pivot more easily than larger businesses.
Right now Claudia uses Facebook and Instagram for taking orders and answering questions, but she’s very prompt, and is so thoughtful. And one of the things that I loved about my experience was how her dad was the one who delivered my family’s order. Family is so important and I love the personal touch Claudia puts on everything she makes. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. Oh, Claudia does catering and can make some dog treats too!
My rating of Mam Pita Homebaker? 5/5:
After this blog post was published, Claudia (Mama Pita) made an addition to her menu, honoring me and my baka” Stephanie’s Baka’s Cheese Pita. This is probably the nicest thing anyone outside my family has ever done for me. Just goes to show the heart of Claudia. She puts that same amount of heart in everything she does and makes.