Monday, June 20, 2016

Indian Fry Bread

Wow!  Over THREE YEARS since my last post.  I've had a rough time.  Moved north.  Medical problems.  I've had an expansion of my available dietary choices, so I've been relatively stable on that front.  Recently I have decided to hike part of the Pacific Crest Trail and carrying enough dehydrated food that won't kill me for 2 months has become a daunting challenge that I am willing to rise to!

So, in my attempt to mentally psych myself up for the misery of living outside for 2 months and walking 850 miles, I watched a reality show this weekend with 8 people pretending to be Canadian fur trappers in 1840 and attempting to take a York Boat nearly 1000 miles to the Hudson. They dined on a diet of only oatmeal, pemmican, and bannock for 2 months. I believe Bannock is known as Indian Fry Bread in the States. So, this evening I am making a gluten free/dairy free fry bread. Herein I've documented my journey:​

Fry Bread Recipe
- 1 cup flour (I use a 1:1:1:1 ratio of Namaste Pancake and Waffle mix, tapioca starch, white rice flour, and sorghum flour)
- pinch salt
- 1 tsp baking powder (mine is baking soda free version from EnerG, and old, so I put in probably 2-3 tsp)
- 1/4 rice milk
- almost 1/4 water
- Rendered pork fat/lard (apparently you can use Crisco too)

Mix dry ingredients. Add liquid until well mixed, but sticky enough that you could hypothetically wrap it around a stick. Cover (with a dish cloth?... does it really make a difference what you cover it with other than nostalgia?) and let sit for 35-45 minutes.

Take a small ball of the batter/dough, hand flatten/stretch, and fry in lard for 30-60 seconds on each side.

Makes about 4-6 mini-breads, about palm sized.


The dough/batter didn't seem to rise or do anything, but apparently it is the "critical" piece for success, other than apparently using oil instead of lard. The rested mixture reminds me of cornstarch mixed with water.... is solid when standing still and liquid when moving. Very hard to shape into patties. Perhaps with a slightly different amount of liquid I will get something different. Took me a few tries to get the temp of the oil right, but they are actually quite tasty! For how thick they puffed up into, i'm surprised they are cooked through, especially for only a minute or two on the stove. I think it may take some practice to get the right temperature so they aren't so oily, but overall, they are fabulous! A surefire winner! Even the burnt one was good.

Seriously, for having lived 10 years without successfully making a gluten-free bread that doesn't take HOURS (and store bought versions are the worst when you can't eat potato or corn starches), this is literally manna from heaven. Other than the lard, its all pretty much easy ingredients everyone has... flour, milk, salt, baking powder. I certainly have enough leftover bacon fat on a regular basis that I might be able to substitute.

Maybe next week i'll try pemmican. I hear its an experience.