Make Ahead

Yorkshire Parkin

November  7, 2015
0 Ratings
Photo by Tom Ellis
  • Prep time 5 minutes
  • Cook time 1 hour
  • Serves 10-12
Author Notes

This is a Fall classic from Great Britain. Parkin is a kind of gingerbread made with oatmeal (which I think is what's sold as steel-cut oats Stateside? Not the rolled oats for porridge anyway). Traditionally eaten on the 5th of November but can be enjoyed anytime this season. There are two kinds - Yorkshire, made with black treacle/molasses, and Lancashire, made with golden syrup (may be found in any store selling UK groceries). Dark corn syrup could be used but probably won't have the same flavour. I'm not sure if mixed spice is available in the States, so I've listed pumpkin pie spice as a substitute. Feel free to adjust the spices to your tastes or add more - I often add black pepper to any gingerbread.

Fantastic for autumn potlucks and bake sales. Make sure you pay attention to the final step - you really need to store it wrapped in plastic-wrap for AT LEAST 1 WEEK to fully enjoy it at its best! This is a British classic that is unheard of even in parts of the UK and I want to get more people making this. It's an iconic part of Northern English traditional culture.

Can be made vegetarian and gluten-free (just use a veggie fat and GF oatmeal and self-rising flour) too. If you can’t get self rising flour, then just add 3tsp baking powder to 8oz all-purpose flour. —Tom Ellis

What You'll Need
  • 8 ounces molasses (not blackstrap)
  • 8 ounces dark brown sugar
  • 8 ounces Butter/Shortening/Lard
  • 8 ounces Steel cut oatmeal (medium)
  • 8 ounces Self-rising flour (OR: all-purpose flour with 3 teaspoons baking powder added)
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon Pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon Ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon Ground black pepper (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease and line a roasting tin/2 8x8 brownie pans or a disposable roasting tray. This mixture makes a lot!
  2. Put flour, oatmeal and spices in a bowl, whisk lightly to combine.
  3. Melt fat, sugar and molasses together in a pan. Don't let it boil.
  4. Remove this from the heat, and pour it into the dry ingredients along with the beaten eggs and mix well. Don't overmix but make sure it's combined.
  5. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted in centre comes out clean.
  6. Cool in tin on wire rack. Now this is IMPORTANT! It will feel overbaked and hard as it cools. But this is the key - you have to store the Parkin a week at least before cutting. Trust me, it softens and mellows, becoming squidgy and deeper in flavour. It's perfect for fall as it has all the right warming flavours.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Gormenghastly
  • Tom Ellis
    Tom Ellis
  • Louise

4 Reviews

Gormenghastly February 28, 2019
Fantastic recipe. Took me right back to my childhood in the dales!
Tom E. September 29, 2020
Thank you!! Glad you like it. I’m not actually from Yorkshire so this is high praise indeed! I’ve since fiddled with the spices (upped them all as I felt I played it too safe) so if you make it again let me know!
Louise December 28, 2016
Are these measurements in weight? Or is it 1 cup of each of the first 5 ingredients?
Tom E. September 29, 2020