Christmas

Ovenly's Whisky & Fig Blondies

by:
November 15, 2019
4 Ratings
Photo by Bobbi Lin
Test Kitchen Notes

Meet our new go-to winter dessert, straight from the women behind the much-beloved New York City bakery, Ovenly: whisky and fig blondies. The whisky serves two very important purposes here: to soak the fruit (so they get plump and Scotch-y) and mix into the batter. The result is a tender, chewy blondie with caramelly, undeniably holiday-ready flavor. Oh, and did we mention they're totally make-ahead friendly?

This recipe is shared in partnership with The Balvenie Single Malt Scotch Whisky. —The Editors

Watch This Recipe
Ovenly's Whisky & Fig Blondies
  • Prep time 1 hour
  • Cook time 45 minutes
  • Makes One (9- x 13-inch pan)
Ingredients
  • 3/4 cup dried Black Mission figs, chopped
  • 1/2 cup dried currants
  • 1 cup The Balvenie 14 Year Old Caribbean Cask
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, plus more for prepping the pan
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for prepping the pan
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 2 cups (packed) light brown sugar
  • 2 large, room-temperature eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup roughly chopped raw pistachio nuts
In This Recipe
Directions
  1. Place figs and currants in a medium heatproof bowl.
  2. In a small saucepan, bring the whiskey to a low boil over medium heat. Pour the hot liquor over the figs and currants. Let them soak for at least 1 hour, and then drain the fruit in a colander or mesh sieve placed over a bowl and reserve the whiskey for later use.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 9- x 13-inch baking pan with a bit of softened butter and dust with all-purpose flour.
  4. In a small saucepan over low heat, melt the 2 sticks butter and set aside to cool.
  5. In a medium bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt, pepper, and cloves.
  6. Pour melted butter into a large bowl and add the brown sugar. Whisk vigorously to combine. Add the eggs, vanilla, and reserved whisky and whisk until smooth.
  7. Add flour mixture to the butter-egg mixture. Use a spatula to mix until just combined and then add the whisky-soaked figs, currants, and coconut. Stir until fully incorporated.
  8. Spread the batter in the prepared baking pan and sprinkle evenly with the pistachios.
  9. Bake for 33 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the bars comes out clean. Cool completely before cutting the blondies into 15, approximately 3- x 2 1/2-inch rectangles.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Chelsea Wipf
    Chelsea Wipf
  • AntoniaJames
    AntoniaJames
  • Tracy
    Tracy
  • Michelle
    Michelle

6 Reviews

Tracy December 18, 2020
Absolutely amazing bars (they became an instant classic last year and I'm gearing up to make another large batch). The dried fruit becomes this moist, spicy, rich component in the buttery base...just addictive. No need to spend so much $$$ on the Balvenie, though (which is a beautiful Scotch and totally worth the money...to drink, not bake with). Just got for a middling standard scotch.
 
Michelle November 19, 2020
OMG. I made these with Revolution Rye as I am more of a Rye drinker and I added a dash of ground fennel to the spices, maybe went heavy on the black pepper (eyeballed it). Otherwise made as written. WOW. These are absolutely amazing. one of the best desserts I have had in a VERY long time. Mine were done at the 33 min mark. I put the oven rack in the lower third and the nuts were just perfectly toasted. Just SOOOOOO good.
 
Michelle November 19, 2020
OMG. I made these with Revolution Rye as I am more of a Rye drinker and I added a dash of ground fennel to the spices, maybe went heavy on the black pepper (eyeballed it). Otherwise made as written. WOW. These are absolutely amazing. one of the best desserts I have had in a VERY long time. Mine were done at the 33 min mark. I put the oven rack in the lower third and the nuts were just perfectly toasted. Just SOOOOOO good.
 
M February 6, 2020
No one is making these "all fall" like the lead-in article suggested, unless Balvenie is supplying a bunch of bottles. It's a limited release, and it's at least $70 US, or double that in Canada. That's one very price cup of hydrating liquid whose flavour is quite masked by the many other ingredients. Do as shared below and opt for a cheaper whisky. It's an alright baked good, but it is not worth sourcing and spending on limited release whiskies. Much more worth it to imbibe by the dram.
 
Chelsea W. January 28, 2020
made these tonight...was a bit skeptical on how they would turn out as I cannot stand the medicinal smell and taste of whisky, but had a bottle of Jack Daniels in the cupboard from a previous failed recipe....and boy am I glad I took the chance on them! Amazing! They are incredible, no terrible whisky flavor at all(which does make me wonder, how much different would they be if the figs/currants were just soaked in warm water), and the whole family devoured them. i did use olive oil as there is a dairy allergy in our home, and they still so buttery and rich tasting.
 
AntoniaJames December 23, 2019
These look and sound extraordinary. These could be a nice alternative to - and a bit more fun, really, than - my standard holiday fruitcakes, while delivering that wonderful booze + fruit + nuts goodness we love so much during this season. And it just so happens that I have all of the ingredients for these, left over from my recent holiday treat triathalon (candies + fruitcakes / panforti + cookies -- lots of cookies). Can't wait to try this. ;o)