Open Fire Fry Bread


Today, we are back at it...boiling maple sap for syrup...and since we are doing it over an open fire, my mind wandered to food and I quickly decided that I needed to haul out my cast iron pan and make some fry bread! I have never made fry bread before, but it seemed like a "fry bread" kind of day!

A few simple ingredients are needed for this recipe and then you are off to the races! First, you will need: all purpose flour, salt, baking powder, milk, water and some shortening for frying.

In a medium bowl, add 2 cups of all purpose flour,

...1 tbsp. of baking powder (not soda), a 1/2 tsp. of salt...

...a 1/2 cup of water,

...and a 1/2 cup of milk.

Stir mixture with a fork...

....until it forms a sticky dough.

Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and gently form into a ball. (I pinched off a chunk of the dough and saved it to wrap around a stick...I wanted to try cooking this over the coals of our sap boiling fire.)

Flatten dough ball into a circle that is about a 1/2 inch thick.

This is the chunk of dough that I saved for the stick.

Next, I melted about 1 lb of shortening in a cast iron pan over the fire...

While I waited for the shortening to melt, I wrapped half of the chunk of dough that I saved around a stick...

...and baked it over the hot coals, turning it every so often.

My "baking" was a little uneven as I seemed to have burnt the end and under cooked the bottom...It was still tasty though...somewhat cracker-like at the top.

I tested the fat to see if it was ready for my fry bread by putting a small piece into the pan...when it browned nicely, I knew it was ready to go...I placed my bannock dough into the pan...

...and let it fry until the bottom was golden brown...I gently flipped it with a pair of tongs, paying close attention to NOT splatter fat into the fire...those two things do not mix well!

When both sides of the fry bread are golden and the top sounds hollow when tapped, it is time to remove the bread from the pan.

Let the fry bread drain on paper towels...

...then rip off a chunk...

...and dip it into some fresh maple syrup!!

This was the other piece of dough that I had leftover and I fried it up as well...the outside is crispy while the inside is light as a feather...delicious by itself or slathered with butter, jam, honey or...

...dunked in more maple syrup!! Since I didn't want to waste the leftover syrup, I drank it as a chaser! I feel a little ill right now but nothing that a few hours fasting won't cure! :)

Open Fire Fry Bread

2 cups of all purpose flour

1 tbsp. of baking powder

1/2 tsp. of salt

1/2 cup of water

1/2 cup of milk

1 lb of shortening for frying

1. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt...mix together with a fork.

2. Add in the water and milk and stir together until a sticky dough forms.

3. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and gently form into a ball. Flatten ball into a 1/2 inch thick circle.

4. Melt shortening in a cast iron pan (or a heavy bottomed fry pan) and fry dough until golden brown on both sides and the centre sounds hollow when tapped.

Serve with maple syrup, strawberry jam or generously slathered with homemade butter!

Recipe adapted from "Canadian Living"