Bannock: Everything You Need to Know

March 12, 2009

Bannock is an old English word of Celtic origin and may have been the first word used to describe bread. Many native cultures of North America have also incorporated bannock, or frybread as it is also called, into their cuisine.

Bannock is a yeast-less bread that we cook every night in our convection ovens. It is a very simple recipe that uses baking soda and baking powder as leavening agents. Although we eat it every day, this trail staple can easily be jazzed up so that lunch doesn’t get boring. People have added cheese, garlic and onions; tomato soup mix and basil; chocolate chips; and cinnamon and brown sugar. It’s been made into dumplings and cooked in soup, as well as fried and covered in cinnamon and brown sugar to make Beaver Tails. Below is the recipe for bannock so you can make it yourself at home. However, bannock is best when cooked over an open fire.

Bannock:
8 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup white sugar
3/4 cup powdered milk
1 1/2 Tbsp baking powder
1 Tbsp Salt
1 cup vegetable shortening (Crisco)

Dry mix the ingredients, including the Crisco, well. Then, slowly add water, kneading it into the rest of the mixture. When it is the right consistency throughout, it will stop sticking to your hands.

Add the mixture to two grease 12-inch cake pans and spread evenly. Bake for around 20 minutes at around 350°F or 176°C. The temperature and time are approximate, but when it is golden brown on top, it is probably done.

Below is a picture of Bannock based cinnamon buns about to go into the reflector oven.  How’s that for a midnight snack!
Bannock Based Cinnamon Buns

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