This may have begun life as Parkin, but has developed into something rather different – something extremely gooey, chewy and tasty with a lovely nutty crunch.
Makes: 16 squares
Time: 15 – 20 minutes prep then around 45 minutes in the oven + cooling
Need: A 20cm/8” square tin, with sides at least 5cm deep
- 75g/2½oz walnut pieces
- 150g/5½oz plain flour (either all white or half white/half wholemeal)
- 200g/7oz caster sugar (white or golden) or use soft light brown sugar for even more richness
- 200g/7oz porridge oats
- 50g/1¾oz oat meal or oat bran (or replace with more oats)
- Pinch of salt
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 125g/4½oz – 175g/6oz chopped dates
- 150ml/5½fl oz milk
- 4 Tbsp golden syrup or treacle or a mixture
- 115g/4oz butter or Stork
- Icing sugar to dust (optional)
1. Preheat the oven to 150°C / Fan 130°C / 300°F / Gas 2. Grease and line the tin.
2. Chop the walnuts then spread them on a baking tray and toast in the oven for about 8 – 10 minutes, keeping a close eye on them to avoid burning. Leave to cool. (Alternatively, roast them in a dry frying pan for about 5 – 7 minutes, turning regularly.)
3. Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl and add the sugar, oats, oat meal, salt, ground ginger and bicarb soda. Stir and mix well then add in the nuts and chopped dates and stir again.
4. Put the milk, golden syrup or treacle and butter into a saucepan. Gently heat and stir until everything has melted and mixed together.
5. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and stir to mix thoroughly, making sure everything is coated.
6. Pour or spoon the mixture into the prepared tin. Tap it firmly on the work surface a couple of times to release any air pockets then bake for 40 – 45 minutes.
7. Allow the parkin to cool then cut into squares or larger pieces if desired. Invert onto a suitable surface to release. Dust with icing sugar before serving.
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