When Design Fails You, There’s Always Comfort Food

It’s dripping and cold here, which is nothing new in the long stretch of gray that defines the season between February and June in New England. Spring doesn’t come here in the usual sense, which implies a gradual warming up, a greening and blooming until you wake up one day to realize you’ve eased into Summer. Spring, at least here on the solid granite peninsula of Cape Ann, comes in snatches. Which means it sometimes feels as though it hardly comes at all. A warm day here, a warm-ish day there, with cold rain in between.


Junk outside + Dirty Window Pane + Rain = Lethargy

So this weekend’s Find of the Week has less to do than tracking down some great vintage lamp and more to do with finding something good to bake — and then eating it — as an antidote to cold rain. I found this recipe for British Flapjack from food writer Molly Wizenberg in Bon Appetit at this time last year, when I looked out my window and saw more or less the same mass of dripping gray that I’m looking at now. During the long non-Spring that followed I made the flapjack several times to much domestic fanfare and then, when things really heated up with the onset of Summer, forgot about all about it. Until today of course. For the record, I don’t use quite as much brown sugar (more like 1/4 cup) and the flapjack is still extremely sweet so if you’re not wild about sugar, you could probably even do with less. And as far as the golden syrup is concerned, I was able to find Lyle’s Golden Syrup in my grocery store — maybe you’ll have the same luck. And if you do make this flapjack, pour yourself something hot to drink, and eat these delicious little triangles while they’re still slightly warm as a way to welcome Spring. At least the way it shows up here in New England.


  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
  • 1/2 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup golden syrup*
  • 2 1/3 cups quick-cooking oats (not instant or old-fashioned)
  • Pinch of salt
  • * A type of syrup popular in Great Britain; available at some supermarkets, specialty foods stores, and British import shops.


  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter 8x8x2-inch metal baking pan. Combine first 3 ingredients in heavy medium saucepan. Stir constantly over medium-low heat until butter melts, sugar dissolves, and mixture is smooth. Remove from heat. Add oats and salt; stir until coated. Transfer mixture to prepared pan and spread out in even layer.
  • Bake until top is golden (edges will be darker), about 25 minutes. Cool in pan on rack 5 minutes. Cut into 4 squares; cut each into 4 triangles (mixture will still be soft). Cool completely in pan before serving.

To read more about this recipe from Molly Wizenberg, click HERE.

Photograph by Elinor Carucci for Bon Appetit

2 thoughts on “When Design Fails You, There’s Always Comfort Food

  1. I love flapjack. Agree with you about the sweetness level. The ones I ate in England were always more oaty than sugary.

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