Little Shack on the Hill

Life happens while renovating!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Bannock-recipe tutorial

If you've read my older posts you will know that my hubby and I own a trapline in Northern BC. Most falls find us travelling there with the cats, dog and 2 remaining at home kids, and spending 2 months in isolation at our remote cabin.  (You can click on the links to go to 2 blogs from this past falls trip.)
When we are out in the cabin, we have a few options for 'bread'.  I make my own, so loaves are the norm.  But, we also really enjoy bannock.  Bannock is a flat, heavy, quick bread.  It originates in Scotland, although the Natives of North America have incorporated it into their traditional foods as well. It is also known as frypan bread.
This morning, after realizing last night that we were outta bread (aah!) I decided to whip up a bannock for breakfast!  
First, here are the things you'll need to get it done!

Then, you'll need a cast iron frying pan.  It will work with your regular type frying pan as well, but a cast iron one is the best for even, slow heat.  I've found several of my collection of cast iron pans, already seasoned, at the thrift stores!

Put your frying pan on medium high heat, add a generous 'glug' of oil and let it warm up while you get started on the batter.  I use the measurements very need to be exact!  I use 2 cups (ish!) of flour to make a batch in a 9 inch size frying pan.  Add to that 2 Tbsp. (again...ish!) of baking powder.  I just use a regular soup spoon for this. Next add about a teaspoon of salt.

Mix the dry ingredients together and get a cup of water...just any cup!  Use a fork to stir in the water
as you add it. You will need to add water until it is the right consistency...a sticky, gooey dough.

 I added more than a cup of water to get it to this stage.  The dough will be thick, not dripping like pancake batter.  But sticky enough that you wouldn't want to try and knead it.
When it's ready, turn it into your preheated, oiled frying pan. You can make one large bannock which can be cut up into wedges, or single serving 'biscuit' sized bannocks. Use the fork to pat the bannock into shape and spread out in the pan. It should be about 1 inch thick.

Be sure your heat is not too high.  You want it to cook slowly so it cooks through the middle.  When it's time to flip it, it will look slightly drier around the edges and the top will have lost some of it's glossy wet looks, but will still be wet.  You should peak under to check on browness from time to time (every couple of minutes).

This is the tricky part if you chose to do the large bannock. You have to flip it over!  How firm your bannock is will be the deciding factor as to how easy this will be.  I have resorted to a 2nd frying pan on occasion to flip it from one into the other, but usually I can manage to flip it without it landing on the stove top or floor! It's always an adventure!  Try using 2 flippers and a 2nd set of hands if you find it is too floppy to flip with one.  If you opt to make smaller bannocks, in single serving sizes, they are much easier to flip, and not quite so much of an adventure!

Let this side cook until it is nicely browned.  You can flip it back over to cook the other side again if you like.  I usually poke into the middle with a knife to check to see that it is cooked all the way through.
Now you are ready to cut it into wedges and smother a piece in butter! Jam and honey are great on it too! Serve it with stews, chill, soup...It's delicious anyway, hot or cold.
I have also changed the recipe up a bit and added cinnamon, sugar and raisins to the batter. Another  really tasty way to serve single serving bannock is with  chili, sour cream, lettuce, tomatoes and cheese piled top - Bannock Taco!!

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  • At February 09, 2012 , Blogger Carrie @ Hazardous Design said...

    Yum! This looks so good. I've never heard of Bannock before. Have to say that I'm so intrigued by your 2 month in isolation adventure. I think I'd love it for a couple of days, but after that, I might literally get "cabin fever". My husband on the other hand, would absolutely love it!

  • At February 09, 2012 , Blogger Sue at the Little Shack said...

    Lol! Yes, 2 months in the bush is not for everyone. I enjoy the peace and serenity though. I get to do lots of reading, knitting and crocheting! There is plenty of hard work involved, but it's very satisfying to know that you can totally rely on yourself to survive without all the modern conveniences. Thanks for stopping in Carrie!

  • At February 09, 2012 , Blogger Nekky said...

    Owing a trapline is something I have already put in my wish list. Thanks for the recipe, I like simples things that comes out great. Thanks for stopping by. Following you and sending you smiles from World Bloggers Community. Hope you Join us.

  • At February 09, 2012 , Blogger Sue at the Little Shack said...

    Thanks, Nekky, for visiting the Little Shack! I'll check out World Bloggers Community!
    I hope you get your wish! You'll need to make bannock for sure if you do!

  • At February 10, 2012 , Blogger momto8 said...

    I never heard of this fact I have never heard of one scottish recipe. thanks..the finished product looks delicious.
    I bet the serenity and calmness you find in your cabin is foreign to most of the world!! lucky you!
    I am your newest follower..pls follow back if you can.

  • At February 15, 2012 , Blogger Heather said...

    Oh my goodness - bannock taco! Must show my kids this in the hopes they will make it on their night to make dinner. ;-)

  • At March 02, 2012 , Anonymous Sarah @ Homestyle Cooking Around the World said...

    This is very interesting- looks like a skillet biscuit. I love it and the taco toppings! Love reading about your interesting life!

  • At April 09, 2013 , Blogger Rose @ Walnut Acre said...

    This bread looks wonderful! I can't wait to try it. Pinned! :-)

  • At May 30, 2017 , Blogger Unknown said...

    Grew up eating this in eastern North Carolina.....Mama called it "flour bread"...great with butter and homemade jelly/jam.


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