Chewy oats with roasted pumpkin seeds, mandarins, and cranberries, baked together till golden.
It’s almost here, just a couple of days to go and Halloween will be upon us. I’m expecting that this year will be no different to any other and I’ll have a steady stream of ghosts, skeletons, and other scary creatures calling at my door.
Normally I’d be well supplied with lots of chocolate, crisps, and other treats to feed the hungry hordes of undead. The only problem I always face is how much chocolate should I buy? The last thing you want to do is run out, but this means I always get in the way too much and end up eating the leftovers myself in the days following Halloween.
But not this year. This time around I’ve decided to do a little baking and rustle up something healthy and nutritious for any trick or treaters that call round. If there happen to be some leftovers I won’t feel so guilty about eating them myself. Childhood obesity is a hot topic these days and one I don’t plan on adding to.
And what could be tastier or healthier than these Halloween inspired flapjacks? Sure, they have a little sugar and golden syrup but you could use a lot less than I have in the recipe here. Oats are the main ingredient and they have a very impressive nutritional profile, lots of fibre and magnesium, that can help reduce cholesterol while aiding digestion.
At Halloween what else are you going to put in a flapjack but pumpkin seeds. Another superfood laced with zinc and omega 3 to give your immune system a boost. I decided to give them a quick roast first before adding them to the oats, this helps intensify their nutty flavour. I also decided to pound them up a little in a mortar and pestle, this should help hide them among the oats in case your kids don’t like the look of them.
Finally the dried fruit, I used some apricots and dried cranberries that I finely diced up and added to the mix, but sultanas, raisins or whatever you have to hand would work well too.
It’s been a while since I made flapjacks in fact I think I was a kid myself the last time I made them, and I really had forgotten just how good they taste. Crunchy and golden on the top and sweet and chewy in the centre. And the best thing about them is they take about 10 minutes to put together and you’ll have them happily baking away in the oven.
Will you be doing any baking this Halloween?Print
- 220g (8oz) unsalted butter
- 165g (60oz) demerara sugar
- 80g (3oz) golden syrup
- 340g (12oz) jumbo oats
- 3 mandarins (peeled and segmented)
- 80g (3oz) pumpkin seeds
- 60g (2 1/2 oz) dried fruit
- Pre-heat your oven to 160c
- Roast the pumpkin seed for 5 minutes in a hot oven then crush them up a bit in a mortar and pestle or give them a quick whizz in the food processor.
- Next peel and segment the mandarins.
- Melt the butter in a saucepan then add in the sugar, golden syrup, and mandarins.
- Cook for about 5 minutes till the sugar has dissolved and the mandarins start to break up a little.
- Mix together the oats, pumpkin seeds, and dried fruit in a bowl before adding in the butter mix.
- Mix everything together and spread on a roasting tray 34cm (13 inch) x 24cm (9 inch)
- Bake the flapjacks in a preheated oven 160c for 25 minutes or until golden brown on top
- Remove the flapjacks from the oven and while their still warm mark them in to 16 large portions. They will be easier to break apart once their fully cooled down.