I've always had trouble making flapjacks that don't flake into a hopeless mess of crumbs, never quite managing to achieve the chewy texture that make flapjacks so appealing. So I wasn't at all surprised when this recipe didn't work first time. I say "didn't work" - the resulting crumbs were the most delicious flapjacks I've ever tasted. It's just that if the oats don't stick together, you can't quite call your baking a success.
I followed the recipe faithfully (SO hard), apart from one apparently insignificant detail: I used jumbo oats instead of half jumbo and half rolled. These fudgy oats are going on apples at the weekend for a cheering Easter pud, a sort of cross between apple crumble and a brown Betty. Meanwhile I have now achieved flapjack perfection, by using rolled oats chopped fine which are easily glued together by the buttery sugary fudgy mess you boil up in a saucepan first. Easy.
170g light brown soft sugar
75g golden syrup
130g unsalted butter
75ml apple juice
380g finely chopped rolled oats
50g pumpkin seeds
50g sunflower seeds
Preheat the oven to 180C
Line a 20x30cm baking tin with greaseproof paper. Do not bother to grease either tin or paper.
Put the sugar, syrup, butter and apple juice in a pan and heat until the butter has melted. Weigh the dry ingredients into a large bowl, pour on the buttery sugary juice and stir well. Pour into the tin, press down, and bake for 15-20 minutes. Leave them in the tin to cool.
Lift the flapjacks out of the tin by their paper and cut into squares or bars. They'll keep for a week in a tin. If they last that long.
* As you can see, the photograph is from the first batch, made with jumbo crumbs. You are looking for oats chopped finely - you can do it yourself in a food processor (when I make our oatcakes, I routinely start by blitzing oats to make fine oatmeal, then I only need to keep one sort in the larder).
* This is adapted from Isidora Popovic's wonderful Book of Baking. The recipes are original yet adaptable, unusual but easy, beautiful and delicious. Not surprising, I suppose, as she ran a baking stall at Portobello Market for years, and so knows through and through what people like to bake and eat.
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