This book is full of all sorts of fascinating recipes and I had gotten it mainly for reading, not cooking, but looking through it this weekend my eye lighted upon a recipe for Parkins. I had heard about this tea-time treat, but never tasted it.
Parkins, or Parkin, is a recipe from Northern England and Scotland. Recipes vary wildly, as you would expect with any long-established, regional fare and range from crunchy to sticky, but all seem to have treacle (dark molasses) and oats. How could I resist?
The following recipe is adapted from the recipe in Kay Shaw Nelson's book and differs in that I lowered the amount of salt called for and used wholemeal flour (that's whole wheat flour for you non-Anglophiles) and turbinado sugar instead of all-purpose flour and plain sugar.
1 c dark molasses
1/2 c turbinado sugar
1/2 c (one stick) butter
1 c milk
2-1/4 c wholemeal flour
2 t baking powder
1 t ground ginger
1/2 t cinnamon
1/4 t salt
2 c rolled oats
Combine the flour, baking powder, ginger, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.
In a saucepan, melt together the butter, molasses and sugar.
Whisk the egg separately, then whisk in the milk. Add this mixture slowly to the dry ingredients. Then stir in the butter/molasses mixture and mix until well-combined. Stir in the oats.
Bake in a 9x9 pan for 35-40 min at 350F or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Would I make this recipe again? Indeed I would! I have a feeling these are even going to be tastier the longer they sit around in a tightly-sealed tin. In fact, some people make these a few days in advance, but I was happy to brew up some tea and eat my first Parkins warm from the oven.