Everyone has a danish pastry memory… OK maybe not everyone, but I sure do. When I was a child and my family came to visit from Essex, they would bring an enormous tray of them from Costco. Deliciously flaky pastry, iced perfectly and topped with a sweet baked apricot. The vegan diet is not very accommodating to danish pastries, and over the weekend this bothered me enough to do something about it.
I’m pleased present to you Apricot Jacks, the vegan answer to the much loved danish pastry. They aren’t pastry-based, but the signature soft, syrupy apricot will induce the same sigh of satisfaction. It’s surprising how quickly calories soar down when butter is taken out of the equation, and these little gems come in at only 73 apiece.
I’m a total sheep when it comes to health food trends, so when all the big-wigs of healthy started getting all excited about coconut oil I went out and bought some. However, I’m not one to cook with something for the sake of having cooked with it, so I’ve held out until now. As a butter substitute in a flapjack-y thing, it’s a hero. Being a vegan for six weeks means (woe is me) butter is not an option, so it looks as though I may end up going through jars of this stuff to replace it. In addition to being surprisingly tasty, coconut oil deserves its current status on the health-ometer. In an article from the Guardian last year, Joanna Blythman wrote “Coconut oil is one of the best sources of heart-healthy medium-chain fatty acids, notably lauric acid, which enhances the immune system through its antiviral and antibacterial effects. These acids also stimulate metabolism, and some research suggests they can aid weight loss.” So that’s that then, less butter more coconut.
- Pre-heat your oven to Gas Mark 5 (conversions here).
- On a low heat, melt together the coconut oil, sugar and syrup.
- Add the oats and cinnamon, stir the mixture until it all comes together and then take the pan off the heat.
- Pat the oat mixture on to the apricot halves, you may need to get your hands a little sticky here. You want to get about a tablespoon-ish of the mixture on each apricot half.
- Lay out your apricots on a foiled baking tray then put on the top shelf of the oven and bake for 15 minutes.
These are great cold, but they’re sensational warm. So I recommend snapping them up with your friends (or alone, we’ve all been there) fresh out of the oven for dessert. Your track recommendation is from the stones, because while these were in the oven, I found myself singing “Apricot Jacks in the gas gas gasss (oven)” – don’t give me that look, everyone sings in the kitchen.
Thanks for reading x