It’s nearly Bonfire Night, and as a woman who was Yorkshire-bred if not Yorkshire-born, that means it’s time for parkin. Make it this weekend, wrap it up in greaseproof paper, and by Bonfire Night it will be just right. This is how you do it:
4ozs lard/butter or margarine
4ozs golden syrup
4ozs black treacle
4ozs soft brown sugar
8ozs plain flour
8ozs medium oatmeal
pinch of salt
4 teasp. ground ginger
2 teasp. ground cinnamon
1 teasp. bicarb. of soda
1 egg – beaten
1 teaspoon dark rum (optional)
Heat the oven to 150C or gas mark 1.
Melt the fat. Add the syrup, treacle and sugar and warm over a very low heat till the sugar begins to dissolve. Avoid overheating the mixture, keeping the saucepan warm rather than hot.
Sieve the dry ingredients, make a well in the centre and gradually beat in the liquid from the saucepan & the beaten egg. -(taste and add dark rum if wanted). Mix to a soft consistency, adding a little milk if required.
Pour into a greased flat tin (lined with grease proof paper) so that the mixture is 1 inch in depth.
Bake for 1 hour in a cool oven on bottom shelf (300 degrees,or mark 1) – check during cooking and if necessary add 5-10 minutes (if browning too quickly add foil and then take off during last 10 minutes). Partly cool it in the tin, then turn out to finish cooling.
Serve the parkin cut into squares. Serve with stewed gooseberries, if you have any, but it’s fine without.