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Sunday, September 20, 2009

All-Australian Damper with Cocky's Joy!

*Damper is Australian colonial bush-bread made without yeast using basic staples. Drovers (cowboys) would bake it in a camp oven (hot ashes) while in the outback. It is very simple and very delicious and can be made in a civilised kitchen using an oven, too! We love having this for a breakfast, brunch or lunch from time to time.*

3 cups self-rising flour (or flour with baking powder added)
1 small teaspoon salt
90g (3 oz) butter, melted
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup milk
milk, extra for glazing
flour, extra for dusting
butter, extra for serving
golden syrup (can be substituted with corn syrup in USA if no golden syrup available)

Preheat oven to 210ºC (410ºF). Brush oven tray/baking sheet with melted butter or oil.
Sift flour and salt into large mixing bowl; make a well in the centre. Combine butter, water and milk and add to flour. Stir with a knife until just combined.
Turn onto lightly floured surface; knead 20 seconds or until smooth (do not knead too much or damper will be heavy). Transfer to tray; press out to a 20cm (8") round. Using a sharp pointed knife, score into 8 pie sections 1cm (3/8") deep. Brush with milk; dust with flour.
Bake for 10 minutes. Do not open oven door; reduce heat to 180ºC (355ºF). Bake 15 minutes or until damper is golden and sounds hollow when tapped.
Serve with butter and syrup (cocky's joy), or alternatively try with butter and honey or butter and vegemite!

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