For lunch, we were busily making up another batch of Caldo Verde, and we wanted some sort of quick and easy bread to have on the side. Well, Pasteur said that “fortune favors the prepared mind,” and, in this case, we’d unexpectedly prepared by downloading an e-book just a few days prior: Home baked bread: Recipes beyond the basic Loaf, by Jason Daly. It contained a whole variety of breads from around the world.
So, it was a simple enough task to look through and find a nice simple quick bread to try. We settled on these Oat Bannocks because they seemed the easiest. Besides, we’ve never had a bannock before, so we thought it was high time we at least tried them.
The original recipe called for just a pinch of salt, but that left these bannocks quite bland; we upped the salt to 1/2 tsp, which we think is better. Of course, it might be that the recipe called for salted butter, which we never have, so we specify unsalted.
Procedure in detail:
Preheat skillet. These go together in just a few minutes, so you might as well start preheating the skillet or griddle while you make the dough. Place a heavy skillet over medium heat and coat it with a small amount of shortening.
Mix dry ingredients. Measure the oats, baking soda, and salt into a small mixing bowl, and give it a couple of good swishings with your fingers. You’ll use your hands and fingers for most of this recipe, so you might as well start now.
Add butter. Use you fingers to work the butter into the oats, breaking apart oat pieces willy-nilly. Keep working the butter in until it’s evenly distributed and you don’t feel any butter lumps.
Add hot water. While working the oats, pour in enough hot water to form a sticky dough that holds together. (A tip: we heated about 1/2 cup of water in the microwave for 60 seconds.)
Form patties. Divide the dough into two pieces, and, using your hands, shape each piece of dough into a disk about five inches across and 1/4 of an inch thick.
Griddle. Place the disks on the hot skillet and fry/cook for about 3 minutes on each side, or until browned in spots.
Serve. These are so quick that there’s no point in having them stand around, so serve immediately.
First off, these are somewhat bland, but, really, what do you expect for mainly oats and a bit of salt? A high-rising, crusty, artisan loaf? Of course not. You expected something that would be quick, go well with a soup or stew, and taste good. And these bannocks pretty much do that. We liked them because they were so easy, and they were pretty tasty in a hearty, rustic sort of way. Plus, they went well with soup (we think these would be a great accompaniment to potato soup), so we’ll give them 3 stars.