It’s time for another Eating the Alphabet recipe link-up where each month we make a recipe featuring a fruit, vegetable, legume, or whole grain from a different set of letters of the alphabet.
So far I’ve done:
This month is E and F so I decided on figs!
Figs are one of my favourite fruits. They’re amazing when they are fresh in the summer months because they have a great texture is both smooth (from the flesh) and crunchy (from the seeds) at the same time.
Dried figs are satisfying in their own right because of their intense sweetness (one of the main reasons that I love them).
Even the leaves from the fig plant used in cooking, often as a parcel for roasting meat or seafood. I’ve never tried this before but it sounds pretty intriguing.
Aside from their deliciousness, figs are a good source of potassium, a mineral that helps to control blood pressure, and one of the highest plant sources of both fibre and calcium.
There are several different varieties of figs, but the more common ones are Black Mission which have a deep purple skin and Calimyrna which have a green skin (and are my personal favourites).
Fig Newtons are one of my favourite cookies (or should I say, ‘fruit and cake’) so this recipe appealed to me. Since figs aren’t in season right now, I made this recipe with dried Calimyrna figs that I picked up at the grocery store. The result was delicious. Matt and I nearly ate the batch in 3 days. Nearly. The cookie part is more of a cookie than ‘cake’ like a traditional Fig Newton, but I quite liked it.
I will make this recipe again.
Homemade Fig Newtons
1/2 c butter
1/2 c sugar
1 egg yolk
2 T milk
1/2 t orange blossom water
1-1/2 c all-purpose flour
1/2 t baking powder
1 package (8 oz) dried figs, chopped
1 1/2 c water
1/2 t cinnamon
1/4 t nutmeg
1/4 c brown sugar
juice of 1/2 lime
Cream together butter and sugar with an electric mixer for 2-3 minutes on medium speed. Scrape the sides of the bowl. Add in the egg yolk and orange blossom water.
In a separate bowl stir the flour with the baking powder and add this dry mixture to the butter mixture a little at a time, mixing on low speed until the dough starts to come together.
Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm (about 2 hours).
Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, combine the jam ingredients over medium-high heat until bubbling. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 30 to 35 minutes, until it is thickened to a gel and very little liquid remains. Cool completely.
Preheat the oven to 350F. Grease an 8”x8” baking dish.
On a floured surface, roll the dough out to a 8” x 16” rectangle, about 1/4” thick. Cut the dough in half (into two 8” squares) with a pastry cutter or pizza cutter.
Lift one square gently off the floured surface and place it into the baking dish. You want the dough to just cover the bottom of the dish so trim off any excess.
Spoon the filling on top and spread it over the dough evenly.
Place the second square of dough on top of the jam and again cut off any excess.
Bake for 22-25 minutes, rotating the baking dish halfway through, until golden. Remove from the oven and allow to cool before cutting into squares with a sharp serrated knife.
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