A Basic Flapjack Recipe, with some variations on the theme….

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Flapjack is a simple sweet treat to make and may be created using just a few store cupboard ingredients. The original idea for my recipe came from an Odlum’s Flour recipe book given to me a few years ago by a friend. Although their recipes are reliable and well tested we found this one just far too sweet, so I halved the quantity of sugar and adjusted the proportions of syrup and sugar. I also replaced the margarine with butter as we just prefer the flavour. In fact, now that I think about it, I just used their idea for inspiration and changed the rest! With a little care and attention to detail it is also a recipe that may be easily adapted to suit a gluten free diet. It’s another good recipe to make with children and a batch may be put together quickly if you need something at short notice for one of those school cake stalls that you only find out about the night before!

The Basic Recipe:

You’ll need a swiss roll type tin, approximately 22cm x 31cm in size (there’s no need to grease it)

Preheat your oven to 180°C and place the oven shelf just above centre.

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  • into a pan weigh 250g of butter, 100g of Demerara sugar and 100g of golden syrup.
  • melt the butter and sugars together over a low heat

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  • tip 450g of rolled oats into the pan and stir everything together well until the oats are well coated with the buttery mixture
  • tip the mixture into the baking tin and spread it to evenly cover the tin
  • using the back of a cold spoon (the mixture doesn’t stick as much as it would to a warm one), press the mixture down into the tin until it is fairly level and compact and the surface is smooth
  • put the tray into the oven and bake the flapjack for about 15 minutes. Keep an eye on it as it bakes as you may need to shorten the cooking time to suit your oven. The relatively high sugar content of the flapjack means it has a tendency to “catch” if it slightly over-bakes
  • remove the flapjack from the oven and leave it to cool in the tin. After about 10 minutes or so you may cut it into your required number of pieces, but still leave it in the tin after this until it is completely cold. It’ll crumble and break if you try to take it out too early so try to avoid the temptation!

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There are lots of variations to try with this basic recipe, so here are a few of my favourites:

  1. Mixed Seeduse 30g of sunflower seeds, 30g of pumpkin seeds and 30g of flax or linseed. Add these to the pan at the same time as the oats and mix them in well

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2. Chocolateadd 100g of milk chocolate (chopped into chunks) and 2 heaped dessertspoons of cocoa powder to the mixture at the same time as the oats. Whilst the mixture is still quite hot stir everything together well so the chocolate melts. After the flapjack has baked and been cut into pieces in the tin, pour over 200g of melted chocolate (milk or a mixture of milk and dark) and spread it evenly over the surface of the flapjack. Leave it in the tin to cool completely as before

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3. Cranberry and White Chocolate – this is a flavour combination I’ve been experimenting with as a festive variation and I think it could become my favourite! At the same time as the oats, add 60g of dried cranberries to the pan and mix everything well. Now leave this mixture to cool completely. Next, add 100g of roughly chopped white chocolate to the oaty mixture. Combine everything well and then proceed as before, pressing the mixture into the tin before baking it. When the baked flapjack is just about cooled, melt another 100g white chocolate and drizzle it over the surface of the flapjack in a zigzag fashion. Let the chocolate set before removing the flapjack from the tin

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As you sit with your feet up munching on the first piece of flapjack, feel free to let your imagination run riot and come up with some flavour combinations of your own! The possibilities are endless!

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