Damper is traditionally a simple Australian unleavened bread baked in the hot coals of a campfire. The dough was wrapped around a stick and cooked or put into an iron pot and buried in the hot coals.
The bread is called damper because the fire is damped to allow the bread to be cooked over the ash covered hot coals.
During colonial times it was a staple food in the bush because the dry ingredients could be easily carried and they only needed to add water to make the damper. (The original version had no sugar or butter and used water instead of milk.)
Today Australians buy their bread from pastry shops or the grocery store. However, when there's an informal party you'll often find damper served somewhere on the table.
The following is a modern version that you can bake in your oven or try on your next campout.
( For oven cooking )
( For campfire cooking )
(For Cadet Activiity)
Note: to test if it's done, tap on the loaf and it should sound hollow. Cut into moderately thick slices and serve while still warm. Top with butter, golden syrup, or your favourite jam.
Just for fun or something different
A quick and easy method the drovers in the outback used to make damper is to wrap the dough around a stick to toast it over the coals. Fill the hole where the stick was with butter, golden syrup or jam.