The Washer Up has been going on about how wonderful Parkin is for ever. It’s a northern thing you see. As in, from the north of England, specifically the north-west. Yorkshire and Lancashire if you want to be precise. And they will want it to be precise. I am sure there will be comments about its origin and claims that it is definitely from Yorkshire or undenialbly from Lancashire. I’m a soft southerner so I couldn’t give a “monkey’s” as they say down south.
So when I saw this recipe for it on one of my favourite food blogs, Kellie’s Food to Glow, this week I was desperate to give it a try. It’s traditionally served on Bonfire night – November 5th, which also happens to be our friend, Jeannes birthday. There was my excuse, as if I needed one. It was enough just to see the smile on his face. Honestly.
The Vanilla Apple Sauce that Kellie serves it with is genius. It’s like a vegan custard, a thick vanilla-y custardy apple sauce that we served warm with the hot slices of gingerbread parkin. And a sneaky scoop of vanilla ice cream if you must know. Well it was a birthday dessert.
Parkin is traditionally served cold and spread with a little butter according to The Washer Up. Whichever way it is delicious but you have to leave it wrapped up to mature for at least 3 days before you eat it. So be patient and organised for a change because the stickiness you get is really worth the wait.
I deviated from Kellie’s recipe slightly by using half coconut oil (not very northern at all!) and half dairy-free margarine because I didn’t have enough margarine. I also used half honey because I didn’t have enough golden syrup and used wholemeal spelt flour instead of plain. It’s a wonder that I managed get anywhere near the original really but this is obviously a very forgiving recipe. No complaints from this end!!
Gingerbread Parkin Recipe
Enough for a 10″ loaf tin or an 8″ square baking tin. Adapted from Food to Glow
- 100 g butter or dairy free margarine (I used 50g coconut oil/50g marg)
- 100 g black treacle/molasses/miel de cana
- 200 g golden syrup/agave syrup (I used 100g syrup/100g honey)
- 75 g palm sugar/dark brown sugar
- 200 g flour sieved with 2 1/4 tsp baking powder & 1/4 tsp salt (I used wholemeal spelt flour)
- 100 g medium oatmeal (I blended my normal oats to finer powder)
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 1/2 Tbsp ground ginger
- 1 1/2 tsp mixed spice
- 10 pieces/cubes crystallised ginger, finely chopped
- 2 eggs
- 6 Tbsp oat milk (or other milk)
Preheat the oven to 140C. Oil and completely line your baking/loaf tin with baking paper.
In a large heavy pan, melt the butter (or replacements), treacle, syrup and sugar over a low-ish heat, stirring occasionally until the sugar has dissolved.
Mix all the dry ingredients together in a large bowl, make a well in the centre and pour in the melted buttery syrup, stirring together well. Beat together the eggs and milk and pour this in too. Fold all of this through until well incorporated and pour the whole lot into your lined tin.
Bake for 90 minutes until a deep golden brown and a skewer inserted comes out clean. Then leave it to cool in the tin on a wire rack.
When cool, wrap it up in its baking parchment, then in two layers of foil and leave it in a cool dry place for at least 3 days but up to a week.
Good luck with that, I managed 2 1/2 days but it really does get better and stickier and more moist the longer you leave it wrapped up so don’t eat it straight away. It won’t be the same!!
Vanilla Apple Sauce Recipe
- 500 g apples, peeled, cored and roughly chopped
- 100 ml water
- 4 tbsp agave syrup or honey
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp butter/margarine
Put the apples, water, syrup/honey and vanilla in a pan and cook gently for about 15 mins until the apples are soft then stir in the butter. You can use it as it is, if you like it chunky. Mash it up a bit more or blend it to give it a smoother creamier consistency. Taste and add more honey, vanilla or a squeeze of lemon juice to tart it up a bit. Serve it warm, or room temperature, with a slice of the parkin.
Have a Lovely Weekend!!