Outdoor Cooking: Making Sourdough Flatbread in the Woods

Andy Hunt
Friday, 7th February 2014

An easy to make sourdough, perfect for outdoor cooking or camping.

I use 'Miller's Magic', a biodynamic flour produced by the watermill at Little Salkeld in Cumbria. It is a mixture of wheat and rye flour, which is good for making sourdough as apparently the yeast which naturally occurs on rye grains is the best for sourdough bread.

The usual method for sourdough is to first make a 'starter'. Take a few teaspoons of the flour and mix in a sealable tub with water at room temperature - an old takeaway carton is ideal for this. Leave for a couple of days in a warm place and you should see it starting to ferment and bubble. Every day add a couple more teaspoons of flour and some water so that you have a bubbling paste. After about a week, you should have enough to make some bread.

Put the amount of flour you want in a mixing bowl - I use 500g of flour for a loaf, and about 200g to make enough for a couple of flatbreads. Tip in most of the starter, saving a bit to build up for the next time. Mix it in, and keep adding water at room temperature to make a dough. Knead in the usual way. For a loaf, put it in a tin and leave to prove for about 24 hours (sourdough takes longer to ferment than normal bread).

I sometimes put in a few teaspoons of locally produced honey to aid fermentation and sweeten the loaf.

Woodland Flatbreads

For my woodland flatbreads, I put the 200g dough into a little tub and take it with me, and let it ferment in the tub. At breakfast time, I take half of it, roll it into a ball and put it in my cast iron crepe pan, then spread it out into a flatbread with the back of a spoon. I cook the bread on both sides on my wood stove, flipping it over a couple of times to make sure it's done right through.

When it's hot, you can butter it, although I normally fry up some wild boar or venison sausages and a free range egg in my Netherton Foundry pan, and have them with haw and elder ketchup, which is delicious and good for the heart. This is a substantial and filling breakfast which keeps me going until well into the afternoon, sustaining me in my hard work clearing rhododendron from my woodland.

Further resources

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Traditional iron crepe pan

Cast iron BBQ hob and slow cooker

How to make a rocket stove from a beer keg

Video: Build a tin can rocket stove step by step

Outdoor living: a permaculture guide to food and fresh water 

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Thu, 08/03/2018 - 06:51

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playgame |
Thu, 15/03/2018 - 07:30