Looking for a way to use up surplus flour, or make a cheap trail food or durable survival rations? One answer may be hardtack, a baked, unleavened wheat cracker. As a survival food, hardtack has a proven track record.
by Leon Pantenburg
One of the more popular posts on SurvivalCommonSense.com has been how to make hardtack, a basic survival food. I was gearing up for an elk hunt, so I tried this recipe from Mark, who had commented on the post.
“I’ve been making and enjoying hardtack for years,” Mark wrote. “I like to use native pecans in mine.” Immediately intrigued, I made up a batch, using Mark’s recipe as a base. Using only the ingredients that were on hand, I had to make a few substitutions.
And, as is my wont, I can’t resist tweaking a recipe when there is potential to make it more healthy. (I always amend flour: For each cup of white flour, add 1 Tbs of soy meal; 1 tsp of wheat germ, and 1 Tbs of dried milk. This creates a whole protein!)
The result was wonderful! Unlike the traditional hardtack recipes which can be nutritious, but REALLY bland, this recipe is tasty! And it’s kind of like opening a bag of chips – you can’t eat just one!
Here’s the recipe – try it yourself on your next camping trip, or if you have some extra flour you want to put to use. But while hardtack is renowned for its longevity, we’re not sure how long this particular recipe will last.
To quote Mark: “I’m not sure of shelf life as they disappear quickly.”
Mark’s Hardtack Recipe
2 cups organic whole wheat flour
2 cups unbleached organic flour
2 cups whole rolled oats (I had to leave this out, since there was no oatmeal, or an appropriate substitute. Next time, I will be sure to add this, since oatmeal’s health benefits are off the charts!)
2 cups pecans (chopped) – (I used peanuts, almonds, and some sesame and roasted pumpkin seeds.)
1 cup raisins or any dried fruit that you like (I didn’t have raisins, but I did have dried cranberries.)
1 cup organic olive oil
1 Tbs baking soda
1 tsp sea salt
2 cups buttermilk (I had 2-percent milk, so that’s what was used.)
Mix the dry ingredients and the wet ingredients separately, then combine them. Roll out to about 3/8 -inch thick. Cut into squares or rounds, then bake in the oven at about 375 for about 40 minutes. Let cool and enjoy.