Monday, April 29, 2013

Bakestone Biscuits - Perfect for open fires or wood stoves

Based on an old Scottish recipe called bannocks, these biscuits are very versatile and require only simple ingredients.  They don't need baking in the oven so are perfect for cooking on campfires and wood burning stoves. You can use whatever spices or flavourings you have available to make these quick and delicious biscuits suit you.

Ingredients - no measurements required, each stage is done by eye so it is easy to make as much or as little as you like.

Oats - use medium oatmeal for a finer texture. To make your own oatmeal, put porridge oats in a bag, wrap in a tea towel and bash with a hammer, back of an axe or rolling pin until the oats are suffienciently broken. You can use a mix of whole oats and fine oats for the recipe.

Butter - melted. How much depends on the oats and required taste, generally about 1-2 tablespoons for 1 mug of oats.

Sugar - again depends on taste, I use 3 heaped tea spoons of soft brown sugar for 1 mug of oats.

Pinch of salt
Bigger pinch of baking powder
Hot water
Flour for rolling out the biscuits
1 teaspoon mixed spice


1. In a large bowl mix together the oats, sugar, baking powder, salt and mixed spices.

2. Melt the butter and add to the oat mix. Stir really well until all the oats have been encorporated and are golden and sticky. Use more butter if you need to but stirring thoroughly will reduce the amount of butter needed.

3. Add enough hot water to turn the mix into a stiff paste. You generally don't need much, only 1 tablespoon. You will notice the texture changes from sticky and crumbly to more solid and shiny.

4. Flour a chopping board, put the oaty mix on it and add more flour on top of the mixture to help roll it out. Roll till about 5mm thick and cut into circles. (You can jus flour your hands and make them into rounds yourself if you have limited supplies, or use a plank as your board and a wine bottle as your rolling pin!)

5. Heat up a heavy based frying pan, dry - no grease. Use a frying pan if your using a hob, or a bakestone for an open fire, or just place directly on your wood burning stove.  Cook the biscuits for a minute or two on each side until golden and crispy. If they burn or cook to quickly then turn the heat down!

6. Enjoy your biscuits warm, or keep them in an air tight tin for a few days.

7. There are many ways to adapt this recipe and make a huge variety of wonderful biscuits. Try adding a few spoons of coco powder to the oats,  or ground ginger, or dried fruit, or rum soaked
raisins. You can experiment with sugars, try soft brown or golden caster, or even honey or golden
syrup.  You can simply use what you have available in your cupboards.

My favourite is to add good quality coco powder, mixed spices and rum soaked raisins to make
divine chocolate biscuits. If you can spare the butter, cooking these biscuits in a small amount of butter in a frying pan will result in super soft gooey texture, simply delicious!