When you are in the middle of nowhere your options for buying bread at a corner shop are….well….not possible. So you are either left with stale Woolies rolls which last so long because I dread to think what is in them. Otherwise dry provitas or rice crackers….which lose their appeal after a few days. Wraps last pretty long and are lovely with salads and veg. Again, fresh ingredients are limited in the middle of nowhere and there is only so much tuna mayo you can eat in a wrap before gagging.
We do have a cast iron bread pot, but by the time you have set up camp and got supper ready the last thing you feel like doing is kneading bread and leaving to rise etc. I always have these grand ideas to make bread everyday and pre kids I did it quite a lot on our trips. But the reality with kids and camping make it seriously unlikely. My time is now spent finding toys left in cliff holes or rounding up kids from chasing the locals goats up the mountain or stopping them from scorpion hunting without gloves.. The glamorous life of parenting!
Yet again my friend Elaine came to my rescue! She gave me the amazing beer bread recipe. I was moaning about the limited option while chatting through logistics on one of our sanity cycles (she is my cycling partner, so many hours are spent together on our bikes). She then said her family had a recipe, one of those passed down from the grandmother to mother, where you make a semi flat soda bread in the pan and it all mixes together in one bowl and no rising and kneading needed. I begged and pleaded and promised lots of chocolate in repayment for the recipe. Woohoo!
So I tried it on our recent trip to the Richtersveld and it was amazing…well the third attempt was. In typical me fashion I didn’t read the recipe properly. I was so eager I scanned over it and assumed by the name that baking soda was used….a whole whopping two teaspoons! The first ‘loaf’ looked amazing and I thought it smelt a little strong, but without trying it I promptly made a second (we were having bacon and eggs for breakfast). My husband sneaked past and nabbed a piece…and promptly nearly threw up.
It tasted disgusting!!!!! I re read the recipe and suddenly realized it was baking powder and not baking soda. Stupid name!!!! It was also a weird yellow color when done with the baking soda but I had ignored that as well.
Anyway, attempt 3 and 4 worked out a dream and what a brilliant, quick and tasty bread. I made it a few times on our recent Richtersveld holiday. So without much ado, here is the recipe:
2 Cups Flour
2 tsp Baking POWDER
pinch of salt
(mix dry ingredients through with a fork)
270ml warm milk
(will flop if milk isn’t warm)
METHOD TO MAKE
Put all dry ingredients in, run a fork through and add the warm milk.
Mix together using a spoon.
I used a 25cm pan and I lightly olive oiled it but you can use butter too. We just didn’t have much for our trip.
Pour batter into pan. It will sort of lump in the middle. I then dusted my hands in flour and could then spread it out on the pan with my fingers. You sort of work it outwards. Put over a medium to low heat and cover and leave. When the sides start to look more ‘cooked and firm’ and you can get a spatula under, then flip. Roughly 5mins a side….very roughly as I never timed it.
Then slice horizontally and eat warm with whatever you have available or wrap in tinfoil and keep for lunch.
I made 2 ‘loaves’ and they comfortably served 4 adults and 5 kids. You cut the loaf into 4 triangles and then in half horizontally. You then get 8 ‘slices’ per loaf.
As I said before, it’s the small things that make trips to remote areas heaven 🙂