This is a story about Fig Newtons (the cookie). And my husband. And a delicious fig cake created by Ashley at Cookie Monster Cooking.
When I read Ashley’s recipe, I immediately thought of my husband. He has always loved Fig Newtons, or so I thought. I printed the recipe and gathered the ingredients.
That night, I was excited to tell my husband about the cake bars I was going to make for him. However, he didn’t respond with enthusiasm as anticipated. It turns out, he does love figs, but no so much the “newtons”. The cookies aren’t crunchy. He likes crunchy. All these years he has been eating Fig Newtons for the fig filling and putting up with the soft cookie.
Eventually, I made the cake anyway, but not for my husband. The fig filling is amazing. I decided that I had to create something crunchy using the fig jam, something my husband would love and also something that could be care package material.
This Fig Jam Biscotti is the result. Biscotti are the ultimate care package cookies because of their sturdiness and their wonderfully long shelf life. Most biscotti stay fresh for weeks. The Fig Jam biscotti start out crunchy (not hard) and get softer over the weeks. After 4 weeks, mine were more like a soft cookie but still very good.
- 8 ounces dried figs, stemmed and quartered (I used a combination Calimyrna yellow figs and black Mission figs)
- 2 cups apple juice
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
- ⅔ cup granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 3 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- 2 large eggs
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line baking sheet with parchment.
- TO MAKE FILLING: Into a medium sauce pan, add figs, apple juice, and 2 tablespoons sugar.
- Cook over medium heat until figs are soft and the liquid is syrupy (about 15 minutes), stirring occasionally.
- Pour the figs and syrup into the bowl of a food processor (or blender), add lemon juice, and pulse until jam-like. Set aside.
- TO MAKE DOUGH: In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream butter, ⅔ cup sugar, salt, vanilla extract and baking powder until smooth.
- Add eggs, and beat to combine.
- On low speed, slowly add flour and mix until smooth.
- TO MAKE BISCOTTI: Pour fig jam onto dough in mixer bowl. Using a wooden spoon or spatula, very gently fold the jam into the dough. Don’t mix the jam into the dough. It should remain in stripes or layers.
- Divide the dough in half. Scoop onto the baking sheet and shape into 2 logs about 9” x 2” . (The dough is sticky. Wetting your hands as you shape the logs makes it much easier.) After logs are formed, smooth the tops with a slightly wet spatula.
- Bake for 25 minutes. (If the tops of the logs are getting over browned due to the sugar in the jam, place a sheet of foil on top of the biscotti until baking is complete.)
- Remove biscotti from oven and reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees F.
- Cool on the baking sheet for about 10 minutes. (If biscotti crumble while cutting wait until the dough cools a little longer.) Slice the logs into ½” – ¾” slices.
- Stand the slices on edge on the baking sheet.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes or until deep golden. These biscotti soften over time and have a softer bite than traditional hard biscotti. Don’t under cook or they won’t be crunchy at all.
- Remove from oven and cool completely on wire racks.
- Store in an airtight container at room temperature. These biscotti remain delicious for at least 4 weeks.