We’ve just had a wonderful week away in France, where all the food was cooked for us. I love being cooked for. One of the days we had rhubarb crumble. Rhubarb is one of those fruits that I adore but don’t cook very often as the rest of the family are not as keen on it as I am. I love the tart flavour and the way it perfectly compliments custard, another of my favourite foods!
On coming back home we have all felt pretty exhausted. Such is the joy of a holiday and travelling with small children (one of whom did not sleep at all well all week). However after a week out of the kitchen and a week of no flapjack, my creative side was itching to get going. So instead of sitting on the sofa and dozing, like I should have done, I remembered a neglected bag of rhubarb in my freezer. It was literally shouting out to me cooked up into an oaty, crunchy, crispsy, chewy delight. I took inspiration from crumble, a rhubarb crisp recipe that came to me from childhood and my beloved flapjack.
This isn’t any ordinary flapjack. This is rhubarb cooked to a jam consistency, layered ontop of a soft oaty base, topped with crispy oaty bits. I’ll admit I was unsure about the peanut butter, but you know what? It works! Both my kids are instant fans, rhubarb is back on the menu!
A few shots of baking in action:
The rhubarb layer goes on.
The finished product:
Rhubarb Crumble Squares
Naturally sweetened rhubarb on a soft oaty base with a crunchy oat crumble on top. No added sugars. Plenty of natural sweetness and wholegrain goodness.
We are lucky enough to have a large plum and a large greengage tree in our garden. Cue lots and lots of yummy fruit which cannot be wasted. With the immense flapjack love I have and the glut of greengages this one was a no brainer – it worked REALLY well.
These are healthier as I’ve not added any sugar, the greengages and prunes add sweetness. I’ve reduced the butter and used part peanut butter for monounsaturated fats. The oats add wholegrain goodness.
I’m off to sit in the sun, with a cuppa and some flapjack 😉
Greengage and Prune Flapjacks
A healthier take on flapjacks that uses the sweetness from the fruit instead of sugar.
Christmas has come and gone but I’ve still got cranberries to use up. I’ll be honest, I’m a flapjack-a-holic, so even after making the cranberry muffins I had to play around and make up some flapjacks too. Life with out flapjack is not worth thinking about. However my flapjack has to be a healthier version, gone is the treacle, syrup and lashings of butter…. instead I’ve increased the fruit, got rid of the sugar and used honey and reduced the butter. The result is a tangy, moreish morsel that goes perfectly with a decent cuppa.
This recipe is one of our family favs and I love the fact that although it’s a flapjack it’s not full of syrup. My toddler girl loves cooking with me and this is a recipe that she can really get involved with, here’s some photo’s of her doing so from an earlier post.
1/2 cup sultanas
1 tbsp honey
2 mashed bananas
Weigh out oats and sultanas
In a separate bowl weigh out honey and marg, then melt, if you prefer a sweeter option you could add a little brown sugar too, I don’t (I heat in the microwave for 40 seconds).
Mash the bananas (my little one does this)
Mix all the ingredients together. I tend to find that a lot of the sultanas end up in small persons mouth whilst the mixing process occurs!
Place into a greased tin and bake at Gas Mark 5 for 30 mins. You may want to cover the top for half the cooking so the sultanas don’t burn.
Slice whilst it is warm and leave to cool before removing from the tin.
My healthier take on flapjacks are well known by my friends, I’ve almost always got a tub of them on the go. They got me through the long early days of breastfeeding and are now enjoyed by 1 year old too. In fact she absolutely loves them. So today, when she was struggling to sleep and I was unable to bake during her naptime I decided she may as well help me. This turned into a really fun learning experience for us both.
I weighed out the oats and sultanas and Kezia enjoyed playing with the dried ingredients, especially as she was able to sneak a few sultanas! She also liked watching me measure out the sugar, honey and margarine.
Then came the bananas, amazingly none of these went into Kezia’s mouth, she spent some time transferring the bananas from one bowl to another and watched as I mashed them. I left her a little in the bowl to play with being an interesting texture and tasty too 🙂
Stirring all the ingredients together was a lot of fun, although the spoon was probably a bit too large! It was a pleasure watching Kezia have a good go at mixing and seeing the look of satisfaction on her face.
I was allowed to place it all in the baking tray and of course Kezia then was left with the empty bowl and spoon, which she instantly started to scrape with her fingers….finding the leftovers showing it’s a natural reaction to lick the cake mixture off the spoon 😉
Finally we had time for more mixing practice at super fast speed!
What are your favourite recipes for cooking with children? Any tips to pass onto me?
Freelance Dietitian specialising in helping those with Eating Disorders and a Media Spokesperson for the profession.