How to Make Bannock the Survival Food Rich in Vitamin C

James Walton
By James Walton July 9, 2018 07:18

How to Make Bannock the Survival Food Rich in Vitamin C

While retail shelves and online retailers have stock that is full of designer hiking and camping foods, there are those that can be made at home and that have stood the test of time. Nowadays the sugary, over priced granola bars have taken the forefront of hiking and survival food everywhere.

This is sad. We don’t need someone else to make our shelf stable camping foods for us. The recipes are easy and the methods so primitive that they may can be cooked right on rocks. Such is the case for the Bannock that we will discuss in this article. It is a powerful survival food to add to your repertoire.

Cited as far back as the 8th century “bannuc” was a leavened bread that was made with oats or wheat flour and formed into a bread that was then cooked, in that time, on a hot stone. This stone would be set right in the fire and the bannock would be “baked” on the hot stone and in the heat of the fire.How to Make Bannock the Survival Food Rich in Vitamin CUpon completion the bannock was often cut into wedges to feed more than one person. These wedges were referred to as scones but taste much different than its glazed counterpart south of Scotland. It was long used as a survival food and a food that could be taken on long ventures without being concerned with it spoiling.

There is a bit of a debate about how Bannock made its way to North America. Some historians believe that the native peoples were making a similar style food using corn flour. Others believe it was brought here by the Scots and adopted by the natives and people of Canada. Either way, it was an early survival food that helped both cultures get by.

In the latter part of the 1800’s the Selkirk Bannock was created, and this featured dried raisins and resembled something similar to the modern-day fruitcake. With the inclusion of dried fruits, you can create the simple bannock and boost the levels of Vitamin C. This creates a survival food that is rich in Vitamin C and all the benefits that go along with it.

Related: How to Make Dandelion Bread (With Pictures)

Bannock Recipe

  • 4 Cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1 Tablespoon Sugar
  • 1 3/4 Cups dried fruits (I used raisins, apricots and cherries)
  • 1 1/2 Cups Buttermilk or Sour Milk, reserve 1 tablespoon

Tools Needed

How to Make Bannock the Survival Food Rich in Vitamin C

  • Mixing Bowl
  • Cutting Board
  • Sharp Knife
  • Whisk

Quick Buttermilk Hack

Before we get started I wanted to give you a little hack for making your own buttermilk at home. Some people think they have to go and buy buttermilk, but it is not necessary. The recipe is also great with regular milk.

Merely pour one cup of whole milk and add about a tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar to the milk.

Simple Fireside Bannock

#1. You will start with your dry ingredients, this is the flour, salt, baking powder and sugar. These ingredients need to be added to a large mixing bowl and whisk to combine.

After this I prepped the dried fruit by lining it up and slicing it down a bit. After I made the recipe I thought about cutting the fruit even smaller. You can go either way here. I imagine that on the trail a substantial piece of fruit will be more satisfying than a more eye appealing mince of fruit.How to Make Bannock the Survival Food Rich in Vitamin CAt this point you want to add your butter milk and mix until it becomes stodgy. From here you are going to add your fruit and turn that into the mix as well. Do not over mix. You are essentially making a big biscuit and you never want to overmix this type of dough or it will become hard and tough. How to Make Bannock the Survival Food Rich in Vitamin C#2. I used a conventional oven to prepare this bannock, but I did it on a “stane” or stone that I use to cook things like pizza and other breads. That is the traditional method for cooking bannock. Ideally you could take this dough mix and place it on a stone that could be heated on over the fire and surround the bannock with fire.How to Make Bannock the Survival Food Rich in Vitamin CIf you cook on stones beware, river stones that could have high moisture content can explode if heated. Its scary and not fun. Just make sure you are cooking on a dense, dry stone.

In a preheated oven I cooked the bannock for about 20 minutes until browned. If I were cooking this on a fire I would flip it after about 10 minutes depending on how big the fire was. How to Make Bannock the Survival Food Rich in Vitamin C#3. Always rest baked goods when the are finished cooking. The internal temperature is still rising and the cooking process is still going on.

#4. Cut your bannock up in wedges and serve it or keep it whole while you travel.

How to Make Bannock the Survival Food Rich in Vitamin C

Integrating Bannock as a Survival Food

Bannock could become part of your pre-camp ritual. I see it as a way to prepare for hiking. You can cook and cool the bannock before your next trip and have it to call on when you are hiking.

By using dry milk, instead of buttermilk, you can also pack all the ingredients to make Bannock and just use water to make the dough. This is a great method for cooking bannock at the campsite, over the fire. This allows you to change bannock from being a trail food to something that you can whip up at the end of a hike.

Because of the dried fruits that are mixed into the bannock you are not only going to have a survival food that will offer you carbohydrates, but you will get a dose of Vitamin C to keep your immune system boosted. This is a benefit that things like hardtack and even jerky cannot offer you.

As far as shelf life is concerned, as long as you keep it covered, you will get weeks out of your bannock. Depending on how queasy you are about mold you can get even more time out of it! In a survival situation just slice the mold off this effective survival food.

You may also like:

medicinal plant map banner bor

How to Make Amish Sweet Bread

10 Things Native Americans Carried With Them to Survive (Video)

7 Super Cheap Foods To Stockpile That People Usually Throw Away

How to Make Homemade Bread in a Can

Top 10 Foods to Grow for Survival

Please Spread The Word - Share This Post
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestmail
James Walton
By James Walton July 9, 2018 07:18
Write a comment

25 Comments

  1. Richard July 9, 14:39

    10 Things Native Americans Carried With Them to Survive (Video — where is the video?

    Reply to this comment
  2. Donovan July 9, 14:56

    Tastes like a bland fruitcake. Gross.

    Reply to this comment
  3. left coast chuck July 9, 15:00

    I never thought of fruit cake as survival food. This article has given me a whole new idea. No idea how long fruit cake will remain good we ( I ) eat it too quickly in our house. I would really have to exercise iron self-control to use fruit cake as survival food but while it lasted I would be the happiest survivalist around.

    Urban legend has it that fruit cake has a 500 year shelf life. The Lions Club in the next town up makes a fruit cake at Christmas time that would be perfect survival food. I think they order in a thousand gallons of rum to make it. The alcohol in it would preserve it and you could always use it as a fire starter.

    I can see I am going to enjoy this research.

    Reply to this comment
    • YARNOVERMOM July 9, 16:52

      left coast chuck, I agree with you on having fruit cake not sticking around long. I beg for fruit cake at Thanksgiving and Christmas time! I love it so much that I can NEVER have it long enough to let the rum soak in over a couple of months. My Mom used to have to hide it when we were kids so she could get the rum on it before Christmas. Otherwise, if we found it we couldn’t resist sneaking a pinch of it a little at a time. I think most of the misconceptions about fruit cake being horrible is from folks who have never tried the stuff.

      Reply to this comment
      • Toni July 9, 19:00

        Just NEVER try Claxon commercial made fruitcake, they are disgusting!!! My grandmother makes a wonderful fruitcake that I get a generous piece of each year for Christmas, she’s so wonderful!

        Reply to this comment
        • left coast chuck July 10, 00:21

          I have been buying Collins Street Bakery, Texarkana TXx fruitcake for probably close to 40 years. I used to be able to eat two five-pound fruitcakes mostly by myself between Thanksgiving and Christmas but have had to slow down in recent years. But this article got me thinking about vacuum packing and freezing fruitcake. I am going to have to try that soon. I think I might try taking the pecans off some pieces and not others and see if they keep in the freezer. Now how can I dispose of the pecans I pick off the cake? I wouldn’t want to waste them.

          Reply to this comment
          • Krin July 10, 19:46

            I grew up eating Collin Street Bakery fruit cakes. In my personal opinion there is not a better recipe or brand to enjoy. Thanks for bringing up this bakery so I could pleasantly think about some very wonderful memories of my parents. By they way, those cakes do freeze very well!

            Reply to this comment
          • RogueBlackheart July 10, 23:23

            Left coast Chuck: mail ’em to me!

            Reply to this comment
          • cookiescout July 12, 13:29

            Chuck, I was thinking that I needed to mention Collin Street Bakery just before I got to your post. I love their fruit cake & actually most of their cakes as well as pecan pies. They are the closest I have found to what my mother made forever. She would start hers in late summer or very early fall. She wrapped them in foil or waxed paper then cloth & would occasionally douse then in rum, bourbon or wine then rewrap. She usually froze a few for us for later use during the year. I have always loved it & wish I had her recipes but they vanished shortly after she passed. Back to the topic, I made the mistake of having it sliced but they cut such skimpy little pieces that I will slice my own from now on. You can indeed save it for months or years by continuing .to give it a drink from time to time or freezing & with the new vacuum packing devices they should have a very long storage life, especially frozen.

            Reply to this comment
        • Homesteader July 10, 15:07

          My Mom used to have me order her a Jane Parker fruitcake from Amazon since she didn’t have a computer. I remember she used to buy them from A&P Supermarket back in the 50’s and early 60’s. For a commercial cake, they are really good, especially when she would soak it in Dad’s wine. Dad made wine from the scuppernongs he grew. In case you’re interested, the link for the JP fruitcake is https://www.amazon.com/Jane-Parker-Classic-Light-Fruit/dp/B07F4DRT3F/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_1_a_it?ie=UTF8&qid=1531234050&sr=8-1-fkmr0&keywords=jane+parker+fruitcakes+for+sale

          Also, there’s nothing wrong with a Claxton cake when you can’t get anything else. Sure it doesn’t compare to homemade in any way, but will satisfy that craving for fruitcake. Just be sure to add a some rum or wine to it. It is a little gooier than most fruitcakes but otherwise not bad. I like that it comes in a small bar since there’s only 2 of us and it usually takes us weeks to eat it. Fruitcake is too expensive to make from scratch for just two people.

          Reply to this comment
    • Doc Fields July 11, 01:58

      Hi Chuck;
      There was a movie put out a few years ago, called “Stone Fox”. Stone Fox was an Indian, who won the yearly sled dog race every year and used the winnings to buy back land for his people from the settlers. A young man and his mother were faced with losing the farm after Dad dies, and the only way he could do it in time is to enter the race, and defeat SF.
      Anyway, in this movie, the boy’s mother makes him some fruitcake for the trail and race, to give him needed energy and some survival food to be eaten while competing in the race.
      I have since seen the sense in storing and using fruitcake as part of survival rations.
      Have appreciated your articles, would like to visit privately sometime. Ask Claude for my email. Doc Fields

      Reply to this comment
    • Zastro August 29, 21:07

      I read that they recently found one of Robert Scott’s (Antarctic explorer 1912) caches on the Ross Ice shelf. In the cache they found fruitcakes that when tested were still edible.

      Reply to this comment
  4. Dandon July 9, 15:27

    Can you add nuts to this recipe? Does it affect the shelf life?

    Reply to this comment
    • left coast chuck July 10, 00:23

      Nuts get rancid after a while. You could try. You don’t have to worry about swallowing rancid nuts. As soon as you bite into a rancid nut you will be compelled to spit it out. It doesn’t matter what kind of nut. You will recognize the taste immediately. No expertise or prior experience needed.

      Reply to this comment
  5. green eyes July 9, 17:41

    last week I sent you a e-mail asking for information on doing some dried beef. I got a e-mail on how to do it but somehow I lost it. it got deleted somehow and I would like for send me another one if you would. I just got your book medical weeds and really liker the lost ways and the lost 2 .Thank you in advance.

    Reply to this comment
  6. Ben July 9, 18:01

    This sounds like a great recipe and would be far more tasty than basic bannock (which I’ve tried on occasion). It seems to me that you could extend the “shelf life” indefinitely by vacuum sealing and freezing the bread in small packages. Just grab a couple of packages before heading out on a hiking trip.

    Reply to this comment
  7. Teeney July 9, 20:37

    I’ve made a variant of this for years, except I use oat flour that I make by throwing oatmeal in a blender, or use leftover cooked oatmeal instead of flour, as I have celiac and can’t have wheat. I add seasonal local fresh fruit and nuts, as well as dried ones. Makes a great picnic item, road trip item, or breakfast. More nutritious with oat flour than processed wheat, too.

    Reply to this comment
  8. bamaboy July 10, 15:08

    I wonder how it would be with dried tomatoes and jerked meat?

    Reply to this comment
  9. scooter July 11, 03:17

    If you use an oven, what temperature do you bake it at? (Not stated in the recipe)

    Reply to this comment
  10. Sunny Days September 13, 18:15

    How many bannock does the recipe make?
    For those who want to include nuts, you may want to put them on the outside surface in case they do go rancid, then they are easily removed. Anybody know if freeze dried nuts will become rancid? If you make your own fruit cake, you might try baking them in straight sided canning jars them vacuum packing them. Just a thought.

    Reply to this comment
View comments

Write a comment

Your e-mail address will not be published.
Required fields are marked*

FOLLOW US ON:

  • facebook
  • Pinterest
  • twitter
  • Google +