Parkin is a chewy gingerbread cake that is very popular in Northern England, especially on Bonfire or Guy Fawkes Night (November 5th).
4oz plain flour
4oz fine or medium oatmeal / porridge oats
4oz softened butter
4oz soft brown sugar
4oz black treacle
4oz golden syrup
1/2 level teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon bicarbonate soda
2 teaspoons vinegar
1 teaspoon dry ginger
1oz crystalized ginger
1 teaspoon mixed spice
6 tablespoons milk
1. Heat the oven to 325 / 170 / Gas 3. Grease an 8-inch lined square tin.
2. Place the butter, sugar, treacle and syrup in a saucepan and heat gently until the fat melts. Do not boil. Set mixture aside to cool slightly.
3. Sieve all the dry ingredients (except the bicarbonate of soda) in a large mixing bowl and scoop out a well in the center.
4. Place the bicarbonate of soda and vinegar inside the well and wait for the fizzing to stop.
5. Add the milk to the slightly cooled mixture in the saucepan, and beat well with a wooden spoon until all the ingredients are blended together.
6. Carefully add the contents of the saucepan to the ingredients in the mixing bowl and stir thoroughly.
6. Lightly beat the eggs. Add to the mixing bowl. Blend until it looks like a loose batter.
7. Pour into the tray and place in the center of the oven for about 1 hour. The parkin will turn a dark brown color and spring back to the touch when cooked.
8. Leave inside the tin until completely cold.
Hint: Parkin should be wrapped in greaseproof paper and stored in an airtight container for at least a day before cutting up and eating. It keeps for about 2 weeks, growing moister and richer with time!