about Parkin and recipe
How to Bake Perfect Parkin
A Recipe for Yorkshire Gingerbread - A Moist, Sticky Ginger Cake
Parkin is a traditional gingerbread eaten in Autumn, in Yorkshire. It is a sweet and sticky cake that is perfect for long winter evenings.
Often associated with NorthYorkshire, particularly the Leeds and York regions, the origins of parkin are not known. It is also baked in other Northern regions such as Lancashire. Parkin is a moist and sticky cake which is traditionally eaten on Bonfire Night, but can be eaten all year round.
Guy Fawkes was born in Yorkshire, and this tasty gingerbread, which originated in that area, is traditionally baked in November to celebrate the foiling of his plan to blow up the Houses of Parliament!
The principal ingredients of parkin are white flour, oats, black treacle or molasses, butter and ginger. All these ingredients were important constituents of Northern, working-class diet in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, so it is likely that parkin evolved in that period. It is a cheap and filling cake that is distinguishable for its dark colour and lovely rich consistency.
Ingredients for Yorkshire Parkin:
- 175g of plain flour (6oz)
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 1 teaspoon of ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda
- 300g (10oz) of coarse oatmeal
- 175g (6oz) of black treacle (molasses)
- 125g (5oz) of butter
- 100g (4oz) of dark soft brown sugar
- 150ml (1/4 pint) of milk
- 1 egg (medium sized, preferably kept at room temperature).
Method for Making Parkin:
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees c (medium setting, gas mark 4, 350 degrees f)
- Sieve together the flour, bicarbonate of soda, cinnamon, ginger powder and salt
- Stir in the oatmeal
- Put the treacle, butter, sugar and milk in a pan and hear gently until the butter has melted.
- Take pan off the heat and leave to cool down
- When the mixture has cooled to tepid, mix in the beaten egg into the pan
- Pour in to the dry ingredients in a large bowl and mix until distributed evenly and the mixture is brown and sticky
- Pour all ingredients into a greased and lined 18cm (7 inch) square baking tin or a loaf tin
- Put in the oven and cook for 1 ¼ hours, until the top is browning and firm to the touch
- Leave on a cooling rack in the tin for ten minutes
- Turn out on to the cooling tray
Parkin is best eaten after a week of storage in an airtight tin, as this improves the consistency of the gingerbread. It is ideal served with cheese or eaten around a bonfire!