Tuesday, 8 January 2013

My Recipe for a Happy Child....

Today was a funny one, it was "That Baby's" first full day at school. It's not like it was her first day at school ever, she's been going for over a year now. First to the Nursery class before she moved up a class to Reception. The big girl's class (her words). It's just today was the first ever day that I didn't pick her up at lunchtime. Without my little helper for six whole hours. Just me and "This Baby" all on own little ownsome :(

I thought having lunch without me might be daunting for her, but nope. She was pleased as punch with her new lunchbox, talked about it the whole walk there. I worried that she wouldn't know where to go or what to do, that she'd be afraid to ask for help. I worried that she wouldn't be able to open things, that she'd struggle with cling film and end up not eating anything. I worried she wouldn't know where to get herself a drink and that she be dehydrated by the end of the day. I was pretty sure she'd gorge herself on crisps, ignore the good stuff and have a meltdown in the afternoon. As it turned out, I needn't have worried at all, she took to it all like a beautiful little duck to water.

After her first full day we had her swimming lesson. STRAIGHT AFTER. We had exactly fifteen minutes to get from one place to the next, get changed and into the pool. I'd planned it like a military operation. Earlier in the day I'd driven the car down and parked it outside her school, facing in the right direction, all ready to get in and zoom away. I knew if I left it until the end of school we'd never get a spot and we'd have to do battle with the posh Mummies in their unnecessarily massive cars. Oh yes, and when did people my age suddenly get enough cash to start spending £40,000 on a car? I don't think we'll ever reach that point!

I felt pretty smug, all the bags were packed and ready. This Baby's bottle was made and cooling ready to feed her at the pool. Then I realised I'd forgotten to put her car seat in the car; noooooo! Cue a mad dash round the corner and it was problem solved. So nearly a doh! moment.

Half way through the morning a friend advised me that "That Baby" would probably be pretty tired at pick up time. And grumpy. And hungry. Not good if you have to swim for a whole half hour straight afterwards.

So! I cracked out my trusty flapjack recipe, which I know she loves, and made her a big batch of almond and apricot flapjack. Not only did it give her a full enough tummy to get her swimming like a fish, it let her know that we'd missed her loads and that we love her to bits.

Here's our recipe:

4 oz butter
5 tablespoons golden syrup
2 oz sugar
8 oz oats
4 oz dried apricots, snipped into little pieces
2 oz flaked almonds chopped up a little

Preheat the oven 180C/425F/Gas mark 4

Put the butter and 4 tablespoons of the syrup into pan with sugar and heat gently until they melt (or until you can't feel any more crunchy bits with your wooden spoon).
Stir in the oats, apricots and almonds and mix. Spoon into a tin or onto a fairly deep baking tray (I've been using my new Pampered Chef Medium Bar cos it cost me an arm and a leg, it does work really well though) and smooth the top with the back of a spoon.
Sprinkle the top with a few more flaked almonds.
Bake for 20 - 25 minutes until golden, then remove from oven and while still warm and cut into huge great big rectangles, nobody wants a slither of flapjack! Finally dip a teaspoon into the syrup and drizzle the top with a little extra syrup for stickiness.
Leave to cool and remove from the tray.


Let me know if you try it :)


  1. that looks yum! I'm rubbish at flapjacks, will give this one a bash! x

    1. Hello, hello! Thank you so much for your comment and for following! I used to have a massive failing with flapjack, eventually I worked out that I was making it too thin. I like it sticky too, hence the extra dribble of syrup. I'm never going to be a skinny minnie! Do let me know how you get on :)

      Sounds like we have a fair bit in common, I live in the middle of nowhere as well, love pottering about at my allotment, but my vegetables are a bit hit and miss to say the least, I'm competely incapable of growing a decent carrot. And I'm convinced my love of baking stemmed from living in a village with no shop, it's bake or go hungry round here!

      Look forward to following you!

      Kate :)

  2. god well done on the organisation (even if you did forget the car seat for a minute) I used to take Wilf to swim class and always found it such a faff to get there and change him in time and thats without doing anything else before hand! The flapjacks look great! xx

  3. Ooo these do look yummy! I think I'm going to have to give these a go one day. Although I might have to switch the apricot as I really dislike them x


  4. @fritha Thank you! If I'm really truthful I hate swimming, but I live in a village with a river running through so decided it was important for my little ones to learn. I figured that they're never going to be in mortal peril through not knowing ballet!

    @Rhiannon let me know how you get on if you try them! I'm not a massive fan of dried apricots, I once found a dried maggot in one from M&S, but I can just about live with them in these. Chocolate chips would probably be a bit on the yummy side instead! xx

  5. Ohh I love a good sticky piece of flapjack so might have to try these. The apricots mean they're one of my 5 a day, right?!
    I'm impressed with your organisational skills - I don't manage that and I've only got 1 little one!
    How did she get on at the swimming lesson? X

    1. Hi Helen, you're very kind, thank you! She did really well with her swimming, bless you for asking, she even ditched her arm bands for a trial swim between two teachers. Massive progress as she screamed solidly for the entire first lesson, only eight weeks ago. Gawd love her! :)

  6. Replies
    1. It was pretty flippin' flappin' good! Although I did that thing where you gorge yourself silly on one thing, to the point where if you see it again within a year you'll still feel a bit queasy. Sadly it's right up there on the list now, along with cocoa pops and candy floss. Hey ho :)


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