By Colleen Fisher Tully
While its origin may never be known for sure, no one can deny that bannock is deeply entrenched in Canada’s culinary history. Take this recipe from an elder of Tofino, B.C.’s Nuu-chah-nulth tribe, then decide your cooking method. Here’s how to bake a loaf of bannock in the oven, barbecue it in a skillet until golden and cook it over a campfire wrapped around a stick.
6 cups (1.5 L) flour
6 tbsp (90 mL) baking powder
3½ cups (875 mL) milk, warmed
¼ cup (60 mL) vegetable oil
In large bowl, mix together flour and baking powder; stir in milk and oil. Stir just until dough comes together (do not overmix).
1. Bake It
Place dough in greased ovenproof loaf pan or casserole dish. Bake in 400°F (200°C) oven until golden, about 30 minutes.
2. Barbecue It
Place dough in well-oiled cast-iron skillet. Cook on grill at 400°F (200°C) over indirect heat for 20 to 25 minutes, or until golden. If you want a nice crust all over, turn bannock and cook for a few more minutes.
For individual biscuits, separate dough into fist-sized balls and arrange close together in skillet. Cook as above.
3. Fire It Up
Find a solid stick thick enough to hold the bannock but not too heavy. Remove the inner and outer bark at one end where the bannock will go. Hold that end over the fire until it’s hot but not burnt. That will help the bannock cook from the inside out, and eliminate any germs.
Slice off a piece of dough and roll it between your hands to form a long rope-like shape. Wrap it around the de-barked end of the stick.
Hold the bannock over coals, turning until golden, about 10 minutes.
Bannock is best hot and fresh. Enjoy with lots of Canadian butter.
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