Monday, November 4, 2013

Sticky Yorkshire Parkin for Bonfire Night

Oh my goodness this is a good one! 

For the past couple of years around this time I have been trying out some Parkin recipes and thus far have been heartily disappointed - the ones I made came out dry, overly chewy and not in the least bit sticky UNTIL....I discovered this recipe from the wonderful blog Lavender and Lovage which reminded me of all the wondrous Sticky Parkin I ate as a child in England every crisp and crackling Bonfire/Guy Fawkes Night - an evening full of sparklers, Roman Candles, Catherine Wheels, wood smoke, the pop of fireworks, the smell of Autumn in England, red toffee apples and....parkin!!!

My sincere thanks to Karen the author of said blog for rememberance of things past - this time with parkin instead of madeleines!!

And so to the recipe which is best made the day before at the very least but was even better after two days maturing!

Preheat the oven to 150C/300F and grease an 8" square glass baking dish 


8oz/225g white flour (self raising in UK in the US add one teaspoon of baking soda)

2oz/55g/ medium oatmeal/pinhead oatmeal - I could only find regular oats so I swished them quickly in a coffee grinder to break them up a bit

4oz/110g brown sugar

2 tsps fresh ginger grated very fine - if you are as fond of a ginger spicy kick as me go to 4 teaspoons!
1 large egg

7fl oz/200ml whole milk

2oz/55g/ 1/2 stick salted butter

4oz/110g black treacle if you can get it or good quality unsulphured molasses

2oz/55g crystallised ginger cut into small pieces
1. Soak the oatmeal in the milk for at least 15 minutes.

2. Meanwhile sieve the flour, sugar and bicarb/baking soda in a medium sized bowl and add the crystallized ginger after mixing. 

3. In a small pan heat gently the butter, treacle/molasses and grated fresh ginger until melted - allow to cool. 

4. Whisk the egg in a bowl and add the soaked oats in milk - stir until well mixed. 

5. Add the egg mix to the melted molasses/treacle mix 

6. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix well but gently until you have a batter that looks like this (and tastes divine!!), make sure to leave enough to make licking the bowl a good treat!!:
7. Pour the batter into the buttered dish and bake for about 1 hour until a toothpick comes out clean when pricked into the centre of the cake.

8. Allow the cake to cool then make the:

This stuff is SOOOOOOO good, I have to say I am not a big fan of treacle/molasses but this is quickly making me into a convert!!!  

2oz/ 1/2 stick salted butter 

2oz in weight treacle/molasses 

1oz sugar - white or brown

2 or 4 teaspoons of freshly grated ginger 

nice pinch of sea salt!! 

Melt all the above in a small pan until bubbly and pour 'gingerly' ha ha over the cake thus, try to keep it on top of the cake and not pouring down the sides - as you can see it's pretty thick so that shouldn't pose a problem:
You can see some little pixie has taken a couple of slices of the cake before the addition of the sticky ginger topping as she needed to check the worthiness of the parkin for the topping - they thank heavens were both wonderful - yea!!!!
Now for the hard part - YOU HAVE TO WAIT AT LEAST A DAY FOR MORE WONDROUS STICKINESS TO DEVELOP, and if you can manage it 2 days - you'll thank me for the wait!!
Keep it covered, at room temperature in the dish you baked it in!!!
This is a great cake for a frosty or snowy winter day and it would be a nice addition to a Thanksgiving menu too. 
Great with a cup of tea!!

I was lucky enough to find local Maine ginger which is so good - which has a very thin skin so no need to peel - available at the Belfast Food Co-op - if you're in town go and get some NOW:)

Happy Bonfire Night if you're in Blighty - eat a toffee apple for me will you? 

Please enjoy this pic of the last of the maple leaves to still be 'hanging around' on a cold November blue sky day in Maine!
If you're interested in the "Blue Rhapsody" napkins featured in this blogpost you can purchase them HERE at my CafePress online shop - thanks!! 

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