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Guest post from Johan of Ziet’s Rambling’s

Guest post from Johan of Ziet’s Rambling’s

Hugs to you my friend and welcome to another guest post from a fellow blogger!  I would like to introduce Johan of Ziet’s Ramblings to you as he shares a post that I found interesting enough to put in queue for trying.

As you know I like to encourage people to step outside of his or her comfort zone.  That’s really how we learn and take steps outside of the routine.  Short of tossing people on a desserted island with a shoelace and a pocket knife, I figure this theme for a blog is more nurturing and realistic. 😀

Meet Johan of Ziet’s rambling’s!

I love Johan’s story of travel and food.  I feel as though I am getting a peek of his travel diary as I sit with him enjoying some tea and a snack.  I really enjoy his writing and corresponding photos.  His style and personable writing style have made him the first person to ever really inspire me to want to try and make a certain dish, but I don’t want to steal the show!  Enjoy getting to know Johan!

Bannock: Another Fallow Field of Fast Food?

This is another venture into, for me at least, an unkown field. This time it is yet another staple food, namely bread.

Bread comes in many forms, including the familiar sandwich loaf you buy from the supermarket.

There are round loaves, long loaves, pretzels, batards, boules and more. Check out the site of the American Culinary Federation for some extraordinary shapes.

The shapes are actually immaterial, but these breads are normally all baked in an oven.

Flat breads look like pancakes and are baked in a pan, not in an oven. Well, that is, except for your very familiar pizza, which is also a flat bread, but baked in an oven.

Flat breads like bannock look like pancakes and are baked in a pan.

Flat breads like bannock look like pancakes and are baked in a pan.

The next area of interest is whether the breads are made of leavened or unleavened dough. Leavened dough rises, whether by yeast, sourdough (wild yeast) or baking powder (baking soda). Beer also works to create bubbles that will expand before the dough sets into a loaf.

Scones are a fine example of a leavened dough using baking powder. Those little buttery cakes made from cake flour.

Well, a short search on Wikipedia for Bannock confirmed that these tea time delicacies served in the Old World with butter jam and cream have been quite well-known since ancient times. In fact, they are still cooked as standard bread in many countries even today.

We shall be concentrating on the version known as bannock. Bannock originates from Scotland, no less, and are quite well known in Canada. This bread is very easy to make and is quite useful fare as fast camp bread. For those of us with small children or grandchildren, this one is the way to go to keep these youngsters fruitfully occupied during holiday periods.

The basic batter is made with flour, salt, baking powder, butter, eggs and water. 1 cup of flour, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 3 dessert spoons butter, two eggs and enough water to make a stiff batter or soft dough. Mix the dry ingredients thoroughly, then add the butter at room temperature. Rub the butter into the dry mix until the mixture goes crumbly, then add the beaten eggs and mix. Then add a little water and mix some more. Keep on adding a little water at a time and mixing until the dough is soft and not yet runny. If it goes runny, add a little flour.

There are many variations of bannock.

There are many variations of bannock.

That’s it. Spread the dough in a pan, bake on the hob until steam starts to come out, then pop it into the oven under the grill at a medium heat and bake for about ten to fifteen minutes until it goes a nice light brown on top. Voila, you have bannock.

In camp you bake this in a pan over the coals. When the bottom is done to your satisfaction, you stand the pan on it’s side next to the coals to bake the top. Medium to low heat is all that is required. Check out the video:

There are many variations. The Canadians add dried fruit and nuts to the basic mix, making for a nice wholesome and high energy bread. Very useful in a camp or on a long hike. The Scottish version started by adding oatmeal to the basic mix, which is what I did. Take care with the ratio of flour to oatmeal. You need a large amount of flour compared to the other ingredients, otherwise the bread will not rise much, as was my experience.

I also added sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds and some raisins. Again, be careful not to overdo the extras, otherwise your loaf may not rise to the occasion!

These breads can also be made in a muffin pan as individual little breads, making sharing at home a little easier. However, for my money, we are working in an ancient realm of rustic breads and a pan baked version works fine. You break off pieces and eat as is, no butter or jam.

As with normal scones, these do not last long and goes dry rather quickly. But that should not pose a problem, given my experience of the taste!

I trust you will also have lots of fun making this bread, as I did.

Bon appetit!

Johan, don’t be surprised if you see me trying Bannock!  I really love seeing new things like this that I can try.  I have been baking yeast breads in the oven for the past few years and working on trying new recipes keeping very few as my go to recipes but I have only tried one flatbread and this one is next on my list.  The video is very helpful and when I serve my Bannock, I will remember to break it. 🙂

Please go visit Johan at Ziet’s Ramblings and you will be hooked!   Johan, you are welcome to guest post here anytime!  Thank you for coming and I hope you have a good rest of your week!

What is your favorite flatbread?

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