For millennia, flour has kept mankind alive; today, because of instant food and a general move away from cooking. The ability to prepare and consume flour have become largely a lost art. Flour is easy to come by and, if whole wheat, highly nutritious, especially when paired with cheese or meat. These recipes use only three ingredients (flour, water, yeast) and are easy to prepare.
Direct consumption of flour is simple and effective for staving off starvation. It does indeed taste poor, but if one does not have the means of cooking available, it may be his or her only choice. Nutrition does not suffer from the lack of cooking, however, and the Plains Indians were accustomed to eating cornmeal on raiding parties.
Hardtack: The second easiest way to consume flour was practiced by sailors up until as recently as one hundred years ago. Simple to prepare, durable and highly storable, hardtack has a great deal to be said for it. It is not tasty either, but is significantly more appetizing than starving. Hardtack can be included in soup as noodles.
- To make hardtack, put flour in a bowl and add small amounts of water until it forms a paste. Form it into thin sheets and allow it to dry in an oven on low heat. That is all. Alternatively, this dough can be put on a bed of coals to make ashcakes.
Bread is perhaps best way to eat flour, as it is tasty, and can be used in the production of sandwiches. However, it may require leavening in the form of yeast or starter (if available). A starter can be made with the following recipe:
- To make starter Take water and warm it to just above room temperature. Pour it in a large jar with yeast from a packet. Add flour until there is a loopy, sloppy mess in the jar. If the culture is active, bubbles should form in reaction with the flour and active yeast within about thirty minutes. If no gas production is observed, the starter is not viable. As the starter is used, the supply in the jar can be replenished with warm water and flour. WARNING: do not put a tight lid on a jar of starter. It will explode and sling sticky flour-water everywhere.
- To make bread, find a bowl. Fill the bowl 1/3 to 1/4 full with warm not hot water. To this, add some starter or yeast. After stirring the starter into the water, begin adding flour slowly until a mass of sticky bread dough is formed. After sitting in a warmish spot for thirty minutes to two hours, the dough should rise. If risen to about twice original size, the dough is ready to use. Bread dough can be cooked in an oven, toaster oven, flattened out and cooked In a frying pan, eaten raw, or wrapped around a stick and held over a bed of coals.