Fig Bars better than you remembered
Loving a food is nice, calling it your favorite is serious. You crave it, you dream about it, you go out of your way to bring it to your life. That was the way I felt about Fig Newtons before I cut out processed foods or most things with corn syrup. If you've ever eaten the brown clump plastic wrapped fig bars often stacked in lopsided piles at the register of NYC deli's you'll know there aren't too many good commercial replacements. THEN this recipe came to my life and offering a newer better kind of fig bar. Try remembering your favorite part of the fig newton, and then imagine it made 10x times better with butter, rich dried fruits, and a touch of almond. I adapted this recipe from the allrecipes website. It still has quirks, but it's good enough to pass on.
1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks)
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tblsp vanilla
1 tblsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup almond flour
3 cups flour
1 lb raisins
1 lb dates
1/2 apple, cored and chopped
1/2 orange with peel, chopped
3/4 chopped pecans or walnuts
1 tsp cinnamon
Cream butter and sugar with a mixer until light colored and fluffy about 7 minutes. Add eggs incorporating each into the batter before adding the next. Add vanilla, baking powder, and salt. Mix until combine. Add half of the flours and gently mix until mostly combine. Add the remaining flour and mix until flour is just barely combine. Cover and chill for 90-120 minutes, or overnight.
Add figs, dates, and raisins to the bowl of a food processor. Run until dried fruits form a paste. Add in apple and orange, and run until smooth. Add nuts and cinnamon, and run food processor one final time until nuts are chopped up.
Preheat oven to 375. Remove dough from refrigerator. Roll about 1/8 inch thick on a lightly floured surface. Spread dried fruit paste down the center. Fold in dough in half over filling, and seal. *Cut into rectangles 1 x 2 inches with a knife or pizza cutter. Move to an ungreased cookies sheet with a spatula, spacing 1/2 inch apart. Bake for 12-15 minutes until bottoms are golden brown. Serve to adults and children, and be prepared to accept compliments.
*Note: You may have extra dough, the quirk of this recipe I have not worked out. I found the extra dough made nice cookies on their own.