From the galley of … Alex Whitworth, aboard Berrimilla (on the Ocean Cruising Club website)

Frying pan bread, and other comfort food

If you have bread, then a Guinness and a bacon sandwich with just a spoonful of Tabasco makes a great breakfast to fortify one for the day ahead. For variety, fry the bread or cook the bacon with garlic or dried mushroom flakes. Improvise!

If there’s no bread, but you have the makings and can’t be fussed to go through the four hour kneading and rising and cosseting ritual, then try this – it takes about 20 minutes, minimal effort and minimal fuel:

  • Take one bread pack – in Australia we can get these from most supermarkets and always carry a few on Berri. Wholemeal works best for me but you takes your choice. Mix the dough according to the instructions, adding dried onion flakes, garlic or any other spicy goodies with a few drops more water.
  • Don’t bother to let it rise or any of that stuff, just divide it into little balls about half the size of a golf ball and put some flour on a board. Take each ball and press it flat with your thumbs on the floured board – roll it if you like – and get it as thin as possible without it coming apart. You should end up with a disc about the size of a small saucer.
  • Put a tablespoon or two of oil (preferably olive, but any cooking oil will do) into a frying pan and start heating. When it’s really hot but not smoking, fry the disc for just long enough for it to brown on one side and then turn it over and repeat. It takes a bit of practice to get it just right, and with the right degree of sogginess or however you like it. Put the finished product on a bit of kitchen tissue (it will be very hot …) and fry the next one. You may need to add more oil.
  • If you are cold, wet and hungry you will probably eat the first one before the next one is ready … if not, fry all the dough, keep the cakes hot and cook some bacon to go with it. A Guinness might help to reduce dehydration from all that effort. The cakes will keep for a day or so if you don’t eat them all, and I’ve often eaten them cold with jam or pickle. They don’t taste as good as they do fresh and soon go soggy, but its good to have some available.