Five Calorie-packed Home-made Hill Bakes
In terms of cost, nutrition, and taste, home-baked hill treats are leagues ahead of mass produced cereal bars and shop bought cakes. Try these easy recipes that have been shared by Fliss Freeborn of UKH which we have adapted slightly and we’re sure you’ll agree.
Choco Nut Flapjacks
190g salted butter or butter substitute if you’re vegan
115g Golden Syrup
100g sugar – use soft light brown for a toffee-ish flavour
150g of porridge oats
60g mixed roasted nuts
50g of mixed seeds
100g chocolate chunks (white, dark, milk – up to you)
2 tablespoons of peanut butter – one to add in the mix and the other to melt and drizzle
2 tablespoons of hazelnut chocolate spread – likewise, 1 to drizzle and 1 to mix
A handful of dried mixed fruit if you fancy it – dried cherries are great in this
Preheat the oven to 170 degrees fan, 160 degrees convection.
Melt the butter, sugar and syrup in a saucepan or in the microwave until the sugar has dissolved. Add in 1 tablespoon of peanut butter and one tablespoon of nutella and stir till combined. Stir in the oats and mix about for a bit, then set it aside to cool while you grease and line a small square baking dish roughly 20x20cm. The smaller the dish, the fatter and chewier the flapjacks, and vice versa. When the mix has cooled a little (you really don’t want to melt the chocolate too much) add the nuts, seeds, fruit and the chocolate chunks, making sure everything is evenly distributed and pressed into the corners.
Bake for about 20-25 minutes or until it smells incredible and the corners are looking that perfect golden colour.
Score it into squares as soon as it comes out of the oven. When it’s cool enough to touch with the back of your hand, drizzle over some melted peanut butter and melted nutella if you like. Put the flapjack in the fridge to cool fully before slicing, then store it in some Tupperware or pop it straight into a ziplock bag for the hill.
Apple & Cinnamon Loaf Cake
This moist cake is a breeze to put together and has the advantage of getting better if you leave it for a day or two. It also freezes nicely.
170g of soft brown sugar
110g of butter
1 large egg
125g of of flour
3 small eating apples, or 1 giant cooking apple
A teaspoon of baking powder
A teaspoon or two of cinnamon
A teaspoon of mixed spice
A pinch of salt
Preheat the oven to 170 degrees and grease and line a loaf tin.
Using the coarse side of a box grater, grate the apples – peel and all – into a large bowl and spritz with a little lemon juice if you have any. Don’t worry if not.
Cream the butter and the sugar together with a wooden spoon, or an electric mixer. They should go light and fluffy. Add in the egg and beat the mix. Add the apples, followed by the flour, spices, and salt, stirring everything well until just combined.
Place the mixture into a loaf tin and bake it in the oven for around 40-50 minutes. When it’s done, allow it to cool.
This provides a rich hit of sweetness alongside some essential fat from both the vast quantities of both nuts and butter.
200g dark chocolate
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
230g caster sugar
110g plain flour.
50 – 100g of milk chocolate, chopped into chunks
65g of hazelnuts, almonds, walnuts or a mix of all of them (lightly toasted)
Find a square pan. Grease it properly and line it with some baking paper. Put your oven on to about 180.
Melt the butter and the chocolate in the microwave on 30 second intervals in a big bowl or jug, stirring a lot until it’s smooth or melt over a pot of boiling water on the stove top.
Put the sugar and eggs into a different bowl and beat them until they’re nice and thick. When the chocolate mixture is cool enough, add it to the eggs and sugar and stir gently. Add the vanilla and some orange zest if you fancy.
Sift the flour into the bowl and fold. Add the nuts and chopped chocolate and give it all a final stir before pouring into the tin and popping into the oven. Cook for approx 25mins. You’re looking for a slightly soft and gooey middle.
Leave to cool on the counter and slice into squares.
Fruited Tea Cake
This lightly spiced option is perfect for taking up the hill with you to share with others. Similarly to the apple and cinnamon cake, this one also gets better with age. It’s slightly sturdier than other cakes so does well wrapped in clingfilm and foil at the bottom of a rucksack if you’re doing a multi-day adventure.
- 400g dried mixed fruit and some peel
- 400 ml of tea (optional dash of whiskey)
- 120ml of light-coloured oil
- 3 eggs
- 50ml of milk
- 125g of soft dark brown sugar
- 250g of either self-raising flour or plain flour with 2 teaspoons of baking powder added
- 0.5 teaspoons of ground cloves
- A pinch of salt
- A grating of fresh, or 0.5 tsp of ground nutmeg
- Orange zest (optional)
Soak fruit overnight in tea if you have the time or at least for 2 hours.
Preheat oven to 170 degrees centigrade and line a large loaf tin with greaseproof paper.
Put all the ingredients except the fruit into a large bowl and give them a good mix until properly combined. Add in the fruit and mix until evenly distributed. Place into the cake tin and bake for around an hour, checking it after 45 minutes. A skewer inserted into the very middle should come out clean. If it’s looking quite brown on the top but still gooey underneath, put some tin-foil over it and pop it back in for 15 or so minutes.
While it’s still warm, if you wish poke holes in it and brush it with some golden syrup. This makes a nice sweet and soft crust after a few days.
Layered Jammy Raspberry Crumble Bars
These an excellent motivator for the steep bits. You could use bought-jam for the layer in the middle but it’s so much nicer with the homemade because it’s more sharp and tangy to contrast with the buttery sweetness of the crumble layer.
For the base and topping:
- 230g porridge oats
- 190g plain flour
- 180g salted, melted butter
- 220g sugar (I always prefer brown)
- Half a teaspoon of baking powder
- A pich of salt
For the jam layer:
- One 350-400g bag of frozen raspberries
- 50-75g sugar depending on your taste preferences
- The juice of a small lemon
- A teaspoon of cornflour
Preheat the oven to 180 and line a square baking tin that’s roughly 20x20cm.
Mix together all the ingredients for the crumble layer – it should look kind of clumpy and sandy at the same time. Press ⅔ of this mix into the baking tray.
Defrost the raspberries, pour out any excess water, then mix with the sugar, lemon juice and cornflour while you bake your crumble layer for around 10 minutes.
When the crumble layer is looking pale golden, take it out of the oven and spread the raspberries across it. Now sprinkle over the rest of the crumble mix and bake it for around 20-25 minutes, or until the raspberries are molten lava, and the crumble bits on top are going a robust shade of golden brown.
Wait to cool before slicing, then wrap and take with you on your walk for an oat, buttery delicious treat.
So, next time you’re chewing through a cereal bar and wondering what the point of it even is, remember this list, and the beauty of home-baking in the hills.