I’ve never liked figs. I’ve always wanted to like them because everyone I know who likes figs doesn’t just like figs, they love figs. So, they must be pretty good! But, sadly I’ve just never have been able to get past their fleshy weirdness. And they are weird, right? Just so fleshy and mushy. And they look very odd. But maybe that’s what you’re meant to love about figs? Maybe their kooky weirdness is endearing? I don’t know. But either way, I still don’t like them.
However, in a quest to make myself enjoy figs (I know, I have massive dreams), I’ve been buying fig flavoured things – I know it’s not the same thing, but it’s a start, right? Don’t laugh, but I found a caramelised fig flavoured yoghurt (yes, yoghurt, it’s amazing) that is the greatest thing I’ve ever tasted. Okay, so that’s a little bit of an exaggeration, but it is amazing! It’s like a dessert in itself, in a tub! Plus it’s cheap! Cheap food, you say? I’m sold.
So, armed with dried figs and the idea of caramelised figs (hello!), I began baking this teacake. It’s great because even though it’s made with figs, everything that I don’t like about figs is done away with in the process of baking: the figs aren’t mushy anymore and you can’t see their fleshy weirdness! Instead, you just get the lovely caramelised fig flavour without all the yuckness. Put simply, I like it! I do think it could do with some tweaking, but it’s a lovely, simple cake that’s amazingly luscious when warm and served with cream!
Caramelised Fig Cake
Serves 10-12 | Allow 1.5 hours
165g dried figs, chopped
125g unsalted butter
1 cup caster sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 ⅓ cups self-raising flour
½ tsp vanilla extract
zest of 1 lemon
- Preheat oven to 150°C fan-forced and line the bottom of a 20cm springform tin with baking paper.
- Heat figs and butter in a large saucepan over low heat until the butter melts.
- Increase heat to medium, add the sugars and allow to simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally – add a little bit of water if it starts to stick.
- Remove from heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes.
- Add half the flour and stir until combined.
- Add the egg, stirring well, followed by the rest of the flour and the vanilla.
- Pour into prepared tin and bake for 1 hour or until firm to the touch – it’s okay if the cake doesn’t spring back when pressed! Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
- This cake will keep for about a week in the fridge, or 3 days in the pantry.
- It would be well worth adding a touch of alcohol to this cake – I’m thinking mulled wine, sherry or whiskey would be good!