Cooking bread without yeast and over fire takes 10 pages of this great book by father and son, Tom and James Morton. It’s not just a recipe book. It’s a book about place, culture and community spirit. Shetland’s food stems from survival and this book takes you on a journey around Shetland and the people that make it what it is. SHETLAND – Cooking on the Edge of World
The bannock is a mixture of flour and liquid with a chemical leavening agent. It had been a staple across Scotland, but has now largly died out, but for in Shetland.
- 550g (4 1/2 cups) self raising flour – plus lots of extra for forming.
- 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1/2 tsp table salt
- 280ml (1 cup) of buttermilk
- 280ml (1 cup) of wholemilk
Mix the dry ingredients first, add the buttermilk and whole milk.
It should look like a batter. You can add more flour if you want a more manageable constistancy. But if you want the lightest bannocks, keep it wet. Don’t over mix.
With plenty of flour on your worksurface, scoop out a 1/4 of the mixture. Sprinkle with more flour and with floured hands, work into something resembling a round.
Transfer to a heated griddle, no oil or butter is necessary.
Cooking bannock over fire is traditional. A griddle hung above the hearth of the same fire that heated the house. But a heavy frying pan on a medium heat will also do the job.
5 minutes on each side should see them risen and deep brown in colour.
Once all the edges look done, leave to cool to at least luke warm.
I served with a very tasty Helmsley Brewery Jacky Boy Stout.
This recipe, including bannock history and science are available in SHETLAND – Cooking on the Edge of World