When the cold weather strikes, I yearn for a chewy Yorkshire Parkin. Traditionally eaten on Bonfire Night (5th November for those of you who are not in the UK), it is a traditional sticky sponge cake flavoured with molasses, oatmeal and ginger. My raw version uses a rich toffee apple sauce for the molasses and also uses gluten free oat flakes and ginger as a nod towards the cooked version. I’ve also added some stem ginger for added warmth and a little syrup from the stem ginger jar drizzled over the finished cake would be a little sticky added bonus.  You may recognise the toffee sauce from my toffee apple slices recipe, another alternative for Bonfire Night. The difference is that I’m using it as an ingredient here, rather than as a component of the food.

If you’re not in the UK and you’re wondering what I’m talking about, Bonfire Night is our annual celebration of the thwarted plot by a Yorkshireman called Guy Fawkes who attempted to blow up the Houses of Parliament on the 5th November 1605. So it’s a celebration of a long-standing grudge, if you like.

Bonfire Night is generally celebrated with a large Bonfire with family and friends where an effigy of the ‘Guy’ is thrown on the bonfire accompanied by fireworks. With our busy lives though, mostly it is celebrated on the Saturday closest to the 5th. Generally the party food is standard outdoor cooked fayre and also fresh apples dipped in a very sugary toffee and served on a stick. All enjoyed by the warmth of the fire. If you would like to eat raw during these festivities, you might like this healthier offering in the shape of a raw Yorkshire Parkin or my toffee apple slices – a twist on traditional sugary toffee apples.

Whenever you choose to eat this Parkin whether it is this weekend or later in the Autumn, bonfires and fireworks are optional.

Developing sweet treats like this Ginger Parkin is part of my Raw Patisserie Chef Training (Level One), Entice. The first training sold out really quickly and I am now taking bookings for 2016 if you fancy learning how to put together recipes for treats like this yourself.

Ginger Parkin
  • ¾ cup pecans, dry
  • ¼ cup pecan butter
  • ¼ cup raw toffee sauce (see below)
  • 1 cup prunes
  • 1 ½ cup gluten free oat flakes
  • 2 tbsp. ground ginger
  • 1 stem ginger globe, chopped
  • Pinch salt
  1. In a food processor, pulse the pecans until they have broken down a little. Add the dried prunes and pulse until well combined.
  2. Over a bain marie, melt together the pecan butter and toffee sauce. Pulse into the mixture with the oats, ground ginger and salt. Finally pulse in the stem ginger pieces.
  3. Press into a square cake lined with baking parchment and place in the freezer to set.
  4. When set, cut into slices.
Toffee Sauce
  • ¼ cup & 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • ¼ cup & 2 tbsp agave
  • ¾ cup melted coconut oil
  • 3 Medjool dates, pitted
  • 1 ½ tsp mesquite (Peruvian carob)
  • A good pinch of sea salt
  • ¾ cup coconut sugar
  1. In a high speed blender, blend until smooth, adding the coconut sugar last. This generally takes just less than 3 minutes and the toffee sauce will suddenly become paler and emulsified just before the time is up.