Every born ‘n bred Yorkshire family worth its salt can make Parkin and this is my mother-in-law’s recipe. As she is 97, and the recipe was passed to her in the family, you can see that it’s been around for a few years now.
Parkin has been baked in Yorkshire since the early 18th century and the early recipes used oatmeal (see ‘Traditional Yorkshire Parkin, below). Many Yorkshire cooks still use medium oatmeal as a part or whole substitute for flour, but this recipe produces a lighter cake.
- Two mugs of self-raising flour (about 8 oz/225g)
- I mug (around 4 oz/113g) of light or dark brown sugar
- 2 generous teaspoons of dried powdered ginger
- 5 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda
- 4 oz (113g) margarine
- I beaten egg
- 2 tablespoons of black treacle (or molasses)
- I mug of boiling milk
- Mix the dry ingredients
- Chop the margarine in small pieces and add to bowl
- Add treacle
- Pour the boiling milk over ingredients
- Add the beaten egg and mix all ingredients well
- The boiling milk will melt the margarine and blend the treacle into the dry ingredients to make a sticky sponge mix.
- Bake the mix in a square baking tin in a medium hot oven (around mark 6 gas/175 electric fan) for 30 minutes or until firm in the middle.
Parkin was traditionally cooked on ‘Plot Night’ (5th November) in Yorkshire and eaten outside around a bonfire. No one really knows why it’s called ‘Parkin’, but as this was a common surname in Yorkshire, it may have gained this name to indicate its general popularity with families in the region.
See also Traditional Yorkshire Parkin