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Parkin is a traditional English cake, a gingerbread that contains oats. This recipe is thought to have come from the old pagan practice of baking oat and spice cakes to celebrate the beginning of Winter. In Lancashire they were called Har Cakes after the Norse god Har and in Derbyshire they were named Thor Cakes after the god Thor. Sometimes called ‘tharve’ cakes as they were cooked on the hearth.

225g/8 oz golden syrup

50g/1 ¾ oz black treacle

110g/4 oz butter

110g4 oz dark brown soft sugar

225g/8 oz oatmeal

110g/4 oz self raising flour

2 teaspoons ground ginger

Pinch salt

1 large egg

1 tablespoon milk

Preheat the oven to 140C/275F/Gas 1.

Grease and line a 7”/18cm cake tin.

Pop the syrup, treacle, butter and sugar into a saucepan and melt over a gentle heat. Put the oatmeal, flour, pinch salt and ginger into a large bowl. Then pour the melted ingredients over. Mix together. Add the egg and the milk and stir to combine. Pour into the prepared tin and bake for about 1 1/1 hours.

Cool in the tin.


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