I’m pretty sure my desert island essentials would be oats, bananas and chocolate – I could happily survive on this combo for years with no complaints. I’m therefore always looking for ways to combine them, and have been experimenting with recipes for aeons in a quest for the perfect chocolate banana flapjack . I know there is an ongoing debate over whether a flapjack should be crunchy or soft and chewy – I’m most definitely on the soft and chewy side, and have finally, after much trial and error, have worked out the key – a lower oven temperature when baking. These can be made with pretty much whatever is in your fridge and cupboard – they can be refined sugar, gluten and dairy free if that’s your bag, or buttery and sugary if you’re more of a traditionalist. If you’re on a health kick you can forget about the topping altogether – they are delicious unadorned as well.
100g coconut oil or butter
50g coconut sugar or brown sugar
100g maple syrup
1 large ripe banana, mashed
For the topping (optional)
200g dark chocolate
35ml milk of your choice
Preheat the oven to 160 (140 fan) and grease and line a 20 x 20 square baking pan.
Put the coconut oil or butter, sugar and syrup into a small saucepan and gently heat until the sugar has melted. Stir in the oats, the mashed banana and a good pinch of salt.
Pour the mixture into the baking tin and smooth over the top with the back of a spoon. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes until just turning a little golden around the edges. Leave to cool in the tin then place in the fridge to chill a little.
For the topping, place the chocolate and milk into a glass bowl and give it some gentle blasts in the microwave or place the bowl over a pan of boiling water, stirring regularly to stop the chocolate seizing. Stir together until you have a thick glossy ganache.
Spread the topping over the chilled flapjacks, then put them back into the fridge until the topping has firmed up.
Slice into squares and enjoy.