Friday, May 13, 2011

Bannock Bread, What is It?

Bannock is a perfect survival or back-packing bread using very simple ingredients that can be baked in a fry pan or pot over a campfire or even wrap the dough around a green branch and bake it over the campfire on the stick. With bannock you can have fresh bread everyday even in the wilderness. Bannock can be made from virtually any kind of flour and any kind of fat available (oil, lard, or bacon grease).

Most believe that bannock is a traditional native food that was adapted by European fur traders. In fact, it's the other way around. In many parts of North America, Native people had no access to flour prior to the arrival of European traders, although some flour substitutes existed like wild turnips or corn that was dried and ground to a powder.

Bannock actually has its roots in Scotland. The Scots originated this simple bread. Because bannock could be quickly prepared from readily available ingredients and because these ingredients lasted a long time without spoiling, bannock became a staple of the European fur traders and subsequently the native people also.

The basic bannock recipe:
2 cups flour
½ tsp salt
¼ cup lard, oil or bacon grease (I use Crisco)
2 tsp baking powder
5 oz water
(I also add 2 tbs sugar because it adds great taste and calories)

From this basic recipe many personal variations are possible. You can add cinnamon, brown sugar, nuts, rasins or berries or whatever you have available.

I generally make dough balls then flatten them down into an English Muffin like shape about a ½ inch thick and fried in a pan with Crisco. After frying they grow to about an inch thick.

Bannock prepared by frying takes about 5 minutes a side to cook.

Baked will take longer, 30 to 40 minutes.




9 comments:

  1. This is a great idea! Thanks for sharing.

    By the way, we hit the low 70s today up in the opposite corner of the country -- it's about time!

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  2. Hi DVG, thanks for visiting!
    Bannock is a simple bread that's fun to make especially when camping. If you take your kids camping then they can have some good fun mixing the dough by hand and baking it on a stick!

    70's must be a heat wave for you. We've had a very cold winter this year, 10 days in a row below freezing (normally 2-3 all winter) but as usual the A/C has been on the last two weeks and will probably stay on until November.

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  3. We usually use prepared foods when we're camping and I want to try this year to do more homemade. I'm excited to try this...and recipes calling for lard always remind me of my grandmother. She grew up eating lard sandwiches and still uses it in her chocolate chip cookies...YUM!

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  4. Will be putting Bannock on our camping menu this summer for sure. By the way, your garden looks great. Take care!

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  5. This is the first time I heard of Bannock and I'm sure that I will try this one on our next camping!

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  6. hey i was just wondering how much this recipe makes of this. looks great, i remember having this at camp.

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  7. Brandon,
    The recipe made the 4 pieces you see in the photo and that's a 12 inch skillet to give you a better size comparison.
    Also this recipe used 2 cups of flour. A standard loaf of bread uses 3 1/2 cups of flour.
    Hope this helps!

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  8. I've made a similar recipe many times. It's delicious whether in the oven or in the fry pan. Great post!

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  9. Thanks Joyful, it is fun food to eat while camping etc.

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Your thoughts are welcome!