Easy Sticky Figs
Figs are the supermodel of the food world. They photograph brilliantly, so they lounge on the cover of every on-trend cookery book (in which the writer calls them blatantly sexy words like ‘pert’ and ‘luscious’ to get you interested), and they grace the pages of expensive food magazines, all covered in honey and sprinkled with violet petals. Yup, figs are a great colour and they photograph well. Try it, it isn’t hard – chop one in half, take a picture on your phone and see how good it looks – with not even a scrap of make-up.
The problem IS…. getting them to TASTE any good is not so easy. I have splashed out on them several times, followed some random oven-baked recipe that one is supposed to smear mascarpone on afterwards and as I’ve chewed on the slightly sludgy, seedy, not-very-tasty result I’ve thought to myself: Hm. Figs. All talk and no flippin’ trousers.
BUT the other day I tried again. I bought some – on special offer of course – and I chucked on a load of things that I hoped would make them taste better. An experimental method not quite in the Heston Blumenthal style but one that is often worth a go. If it doesn’t taste all that, add something that might make it taste better.
Example: A chip on it’s own: Blah. A chip sprinkled with basic salt and malt vinegar: Yay!
So back to the figs. I mixed in a jug:
- 3tbsp runny honey
- 2tbsp date syrup
- 4 tbsp water
- A few drops of vanilla essence
- 6 Cardamom pods – the green case discarded, the little black seeds crushed in a pestle or under the back of a spoon. If you don’t like Cardamom or don’t have any, leave it out. Or put in a half teaspoon of cinnamon if you like that.
Pour this onto:
- 4 sliced figs.
Bake at 180 degrees Centigrade for about half an hour.
And they are SOOOO LUSH I can’t tell you. They have flavour! And they are super-versatile.
Here are my ideas: use warm rolled up in pancakes, drop a few spoonfuls on some ice cream, use cold as the basis for a trifle instead of jam, eat hot as a pudding with some cream on, or even -yes, some mascarpone if you can ever afford THAT, drop some onto a creme brulee (bought or homemade) and impress your friends – you get the idea.
Use them like a sauce or like a jam.
And THAT kind of versatility is what this blog is all about: something with only a few ingredients that you can make over and over and use in different locations. That’s why they’re showing off on our front page.