Thursday, 24 July 2014

Recipe: Vegan peanut butter flapjacks

Vegan peanut butter flapjacks, as made by EJ
I had a flapjack a few weeks ago and realised how long it had been since I'd baked a batch - I also remembered how amazing they are. Baking can be like an obsession for me; when I find a recipe or type of cake I love, I bake it constantly, until a new favourite surfaces (I'm currently on chocolate brownies - a particularly dangerous obsession). I did this with flapjacks a few years ago, regrettably neglecting to record my recipe in any permanent sort of way. But one of the great things about flapjacks is that they're so easy to throw together, that with the intuitive proportioning of ingredients - they're actually quite difficult to get wrong. This version is inspired by my old obsession - packed with oats, fruit, peanut butter and seeds, but with the omission of butter (I used Pure dairy free sunflower spread instead). I'm starting to bake more dairy free versions of old favourites these days - a new friend is lactose intolerant, veganism is on the increase within my social circle and family- and annoying pregnancy food aversions have turned me into an almost-vegan for the last seven months (although it's been a surprisingly easy adjustment to make).

I'm not sure I can actually make a batch of flapjacks without adding a dollop of peanut butter, the richness and saltiness complements the golden syrup and takes the edge off the sweetness; it just transforms them into something else.

Makes approximately 8 flapjacks  

100g vegan sunflower spread
75g soft light brown sugar
2.5tbs golden syrup
200g jumbo oats
50g sultanas
50g cranberries
25g sunflower and pumpkin seeds (mixed)
2 level tbs salted crunchy peanut butter

1) Line and lightly oil a 20cm square baking tin. Pre-heat the oven to 160C (fan) 

2) Melt the vegan sunflower spread over a low heat until completely liquid but not hot, remove from the heat.

3) Add the soft light brown sugar and golden syrup and stir until dissolved into the melted sunflower spread.

4) Tip in the oats and stir until they're completely coated. Add the sultanas, cranberries and seeds.

5) Add the peanut butter and thoroughly stir through.

6) Spoon the flapjack mixture into the prepared tin, pressing down with the back of a metal spoon to create an even surface.

7) Bake at 160C for 25 minutes, until just turning golden at the edges.

8) Leave to cool in the tin, before lifting the slab of flapjack out and cutting into slices with a sharp knife. Store in a well sealed tupperware container until you're ready to enjoy them.

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