For hundreds of years damper was a staple food in the Australian bush.
As the amount of ingredients was small and it was all dry ingredients, meaning it could be easily carried around.
The original version of damper used plain flour and had no sugar or butter and it used water instead of milk. The damper dough was wrapped around a stick and cooked over a fire, or put into an iron pot and buried in hot coals.
Times have changed since then, and so have the ingredients. Damper is now jazzed up with a variety of ingredients - you can add cheeses and herbs for a savoury damper or go sugar and chocolate for something sweet. I personally love the plain and simple scone-like damper that can be drizzled with honey or jam.
Nice and hot with a cup of tea, this makes for a great breakfast or snack.
- 3 cups self raising flour
- 1/4 teaspoons salt
- 180ml milk (if mixture is dry then dd more)
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1/3 cups (or 80gms) butter
- Mix the flour, salt and sugar into a bowl. Rub the butter into the flour with your fingertips until it looks like fine breadcrumbs.
- Add milk slowly and mix to form a soft dough.
- Knead until smooth.
- Shape the dough into a round loaf or small scone shapes, brush with milk and cut a cross in the top surface of the dough.
- Grease and dust with flour a round cake tin (you can substitute a lat baking pan, but the round tin gives a better shape to the loaf).
- Place dough in the pan and bake in a preheated oven at 190c (375f) for 30-40min.
- To test if it is done, gently tap the loaf and it should sound hollow.
- Cut into moderately thick slices and serve while still warm.
- Top with butter, syrup or your favourite jam.