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Author Notes: When people see these little square cookies their faces light up with nostalgia. But what's even better is that after they take a bite, their smiles broaden and they declare these cookies even better than the originals. It's easy to make a big heap of these and keep the smiles going all day long. Note: If you don't have fresh figs, you can substitute a 1/2 pound dry figs, plus 2 cups water (or if you want to make grown-up fig newtons, you could use brandy or Cointreau for some of the liquid). - vrunka —vrunka
Food52 Review: Vrunka's cookies are a very nice update on the classic fig newton. With just a hint of citrus and spice, the sweet fig compote filling is delicious. Be sure to stir the figs when you start cooking, and add a little water or orange juice to keep the sugar from burning too quickly. You may not need an hour to get a nice thick consistency. Go for whole wheat flour -- its nutty quality works well with the flavorful fig filling. – Stephanie —The Editors
Makes 5 dozen cookies
tablespoons butter, melted
cup packed brown sugar
teaspoon vanilla extract
cups whole wheat flour
teaspoon baking soda
teaspoons baking powder
Orange-Cardamom Fig Filling
pound fresh figs
cup brown sugar
zest from 1 orange
- In a large mixing bowl, combine butter and sugar, then beat in eggs and vanilla.
- Mix in flour, baking soda and baking powder.
- Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour.
- Note: you can sub some of the whole wheat flour for all-purpose if you want it to taste a little less... healthy.
- Chop up the figs and combine with all filling ingredients in a heavy saucepan. Bring to a boil then simmer until thick, about 1 hour. Remove from heat and remove cardamom pods (remember to count them before you put them in so you know how many you're looking for!).
- If it's too chunky, whirr the whole thing in a blender or with an immersion blender. Or just mash it with a potato masher. It doesn't have to be perfectly smooth, but you don't want big chunks.
- Preheat oven to 375.
- Split dough in half and roll it into a square-ish shape about 12' on each side. Cut it into three strips and transfer the strips to a cookie sheet (that's preferably covered with a silpat or parchment paper or just greased). Put a skinny strip of fig paste down the middle and then fold up the two sides so that meet at the top in the middle and over lap a little. They should stick together just fine, but give them a little squeeze if needed.
- Slice the strips into 1-inch segments. No need to cut all the way through -- you can break them apart later.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes or until brown.
- Cool and repeat the process with the other half of the dough.
- These cookies are better a day or two later so feel free to make them ahead of time.
- This recipe is a Community Pick!
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Road Trip Snack
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Holiday Confection
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Recipe with Cardamom
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Open House Dish
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Non-Pie Thanksgiving Dessert