A classic from the bush, damper is great to make on a camping trip or a fun bread to throw together with the kids.
The wattleseeds add a nutty, coffee-like flavour and smell fantastic when sliced hot.
- 900 g self-raising flour, sifted
- 2 tbsp wattleseeds (see Note)
- 2 tbsp thyme leaves
- 1 tsp salt
- 500 ml (2 cups) full-cream milk
- butter and golden syrup, to serve
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
If you're using a camp oven, build a fire and get a nice bed of coals going. If you’re baking in an oven at home, lightly grease a baking tray and preheat the oven to 200˚C.
In a bowl, combine the flour, wattleseeds, thyme and salt, then make a well in the centre and pour in the milk. Combine everything to form a smooth slightly moist dough.
Turn the dough out onto a floured bench and knead until the dough is smooth. Shape the dough into a round loaf. Use a sharp knife to score the top with an “X”. Lightly dust the top with flour just before baking.
If using a camp oven, set the oven on a bed of gently glowing coals, place the loaf inside, put the lid on and, using a shovel, lay some coals over the camp oven. Bake for about 35 minutes or until the loaf has a golden crust and sounds hollow when tapped.
If baking your damper in a regular oven, place the loaf on the oven tray and bake for 35–40 minutes – again, you want the loaf to have a golden brown crust and sound hollow when tapped.
Serve with butter, golden syrup and hot cups of billy tea.
• Wattleseed can be purchased online
Photography by Sharyn Cairns. Styling by Lee Blaylock. Food preparation by Tiffany Page. Creative concept by Belinda So.