I spent my student years studying up in the wonderful city of York and one Christmas time worked in Betty's Tearooms. Betty's is possibly more famous in York than the Minster or the Vikings. People queue for hours to taste the traditional cream tea, the pikelets or the Fat Rascals.
I worked in the shop and as part of my 'training' I was required to sample every single item on sale, from the mouth-watering cakes and patisseries, to the melt-in-your-mouth biscuits, the speciality breads and the delicate, delicious savoury tarts and pies. I thought I'd died and gone to foodie-heaven. No other job has, or will, match my brief, but illustrious time at Betty's.
And in honour of my time there, I've been meaning to bake a Yorkshire Ginger Parkin for yonks.
At work we work very closely with the local hospice, who are holding a Family Fun Day this weekend. I leapt at the chance to bake for their cake stall. I think you're on to a winner with a traybake, such as this Parkin, for a cake sale or stall. Easy to portion out, easy to make and great for batch baking. For more inspirational traybakes, check out BBC Good Food's traybakes.
Yorkshire Ginger Parkin
(by James Martin)
225g self raising flour
110g caster sugar
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
110g golden syrup
Preheat the oven to 150C/300F/Gas 2. Line a 22cm/8in tin.
- Sieve the flour, sugar, ginger and bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl.
- In a small pan gently heat the butter and syrup until melted.
- Beat the egg into the milk.
- Gradually pour the butter and syrup into the flour and stir. The mixture will be thick.
- Pour in the egg and milk and stir until smooth and pour into the lined tin. Bake for 1 hour
- It actually tastes better 2-3 days after baking, allowing you to make it nicely in advance if you are baking for the entire stall. After 2-3 days it becomes deliciously sticky, moist and syrupy.
- I popped the squares of Parkin into little clear food gift bags I'd spotted in the homewares aisle of Waitrose from a company called 'Millie's Kitchen'