Monday, 24 March 2014

Baking with Savvy


We've recently taken delivery of some Savvy spreads at Beanies and as it's such an interesting product, using natural sweeteners, I wondered how it would perform in a bit of baking...

Original Savvy is a spread made from tahini, carob syrup and organic wildflower honey.  There is also a Savvy which is sweetened with Agave syrup and therefore suitable for vegans - and Chocolate Savvy one with honey and one with Agave.

It has a distinctive aroma and flavour and I must admit when I first opened the jar I was a little disconcerted - the aroma was more like a savoury spread than a sweet one but after a couple of finger dips I was convinced...

Jonny Drury, the developer and manufacturer, suggested that I might try making some parkin with it and he gave me the basis for a recipe...

I gave it a go:

  • 200g medium oatmeal - ( Jonny actually suggested plain flour or gluten free flour but I thought oatmeal might give a more traditional parkin texture)
  • 400g Savvy Chocolate spread
  • 3 large eggs
  • 30g desiccated coconut
  • 1 tsp Almond extract - optional


  1. Preheat oven to 150C
  2. Mix it all together!  (The Savvy is quite viscous so you have to work quite hard to beat the eggs into it.  It might be an idea to stand the jar in a bowl of warm water for a few minutes to get it moving.)
  3. Pour the mixture into a baking tray.  ( I was using one of the foil trays that we use at the bakery - it's about 9"x11".  In retrospect the tray may have been a bit too large as the parkin could do with being a bit thicker.  Try 8"x8" square.  I lined mine with parchment - it just makes it easier to get it out.)
  4. Bake for 25 minutes until a cocktail stick comes out clean.
Usually with parkin it's best to leave it a wrapped up for a week or so before cutting to develop a nice sticky texture - but I can't do that I need to taste it!

Having tasted the parkin I think actually it could be more flavourful if I had used ginger in it rather than almond essence - some stem ginger or ground spice...  and I do think it will be better for keeping a while as it's slightly on the dry side at the moment.

I also tried my hand at a chocolate Savvy flan...
  • 1 x 7" pastry case - blind baked.  (I actually didn't blind bake my flan shell but I should have!.. You want a soft wobble set on the finished flan which means a fairly short baking time at a not-too-fierce temperature - about 130C - which means the pastry doesn't get that crisp.  Blind baking should sort that out... next time...)
  • 200g Savvy Chocolate - again warm the jar a little to help with the mixing.
  • 2 large free range, organic eggs - beaten

It couldn't be simpler...
  1. In a bowl combine the eggs and the Savvy
  2. Pour into the pastry case
  3. Bake at 130C until the filling is just set.  The filling will rise a little as it bakes but it shouldn't go too far or else it will become a little rubbery
  4. Allow to cool...
  5. Enjoy...
This was a tasty tart - it certainly could have done with blind baking and I think the filling needed to be slightly looser.  Savvy as I mentioned above is quite viscous and I think if I made this again I would let it down a bit maybe with soya or rice milk.  This would help with the mixing in of the eggs and should provide a softer textured flan.

Overall I think Savvy will be an interesting addition to my baking cupboard but I'll have to practise a little more before I get really delicious results with it!  I've only tried baking with the Chocolate Savvy - at some point I'll have a go with the Original.

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