“Fig Newton” Cookie Recipe

Our family is doing well. My physical recovery time with this baby was amazingly short (it’s crazy how much better it is to NOT be recovering from major abdominal surgery…). Other than being deeply, deeply disorganized that is. I hesitated to take people up on their offers of food since I felt so good compared to last time, but then I realized that I am experiencing a normal amount of tiredness and that it’s okay to need help even if I’m not a complete puddle on the floor. I’m not totally overwhelmed, but I am somewhat whelmed and that’s to be expected.

Anyhow, this relates to fig newtons because it’s a symptom of exactly how with it I am not. I spent  three hours the other day researching recipes, grinding flour, and making these cookies. Then I finished them at around 6 p.m. and realized we didn’t have anything for dinner. Luckily, I had some soup that my friend JJ. had given me, so my family did not have cookies for dinner.

If you wanted to skip the stove-top portion, you could get fig jam or any other kind of jam, for that matter. Honestly I still want to tweak this filling recipe a bit (it wasn’t bad…just not quite fig newton-ey enough for my taste), so please let me know in the comments if you make these and come up with something delicious.

So without further ado, here’s the recipe:

 

Dough

  • 3-4 cups whole grain spelt flour
  • 1/2 cup apple juice
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 3/8 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • ½ cup pure (not extra virgin) olive oil, or other vegetable oil.
  • 4 eggs, divided
Filling
  • 2 cups figs, chopped (can use dried)
  • 2 cup apple juice
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 4 tbsp. sugar (optional–depends on your sweet tooth)
  • 1 tsp. orange peel, or zest of 1 orange

The method:

Make the dough:

  • Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl, or the bowl of a stand mixer. Add in oil and mix until the dough is sandy loooking.
  • Whisk 3 eggs together with 1/2 cup apple juice and add to the dough. Mix to combine. If the dough is too wet, add more flour. If too dry, add more apple juice. The dough should be only slightly softer than you want to use. Form the dough into a ball, place in an airtight container and refrigerate for 2 hours or so.
Make the filling:

  • Combine all the filling ingredients in a saucepan or skillet and cook over medium heat until all the liquid is absorbed by the figs and the mixture is thick.
  • Let the filling cool slightly, then puree it in a food processor until fairly smooth. Refrigerate until time to bake.
At baking time:
  • Heat the oven to 375F. Make an egg wash by whisking the remaining egg with a little water (a couple of teaspoons or less). I have quite a sweet tooth, so I added some sugar to the egg wash and it made for a nice sweetness on top.
  • Divide the dough into workable portions. On a lightly floured surface roll out each portion of dough into a rectangle, about 1/8 inch thick. Work with 1 portion of dough at a time. Cut the dough lengthwise into strips, about 2 1/2- 3 inches wide.
  • Paint around the edges of each strip with egg wash. Spoon the fig filling down the center of the strip and then fold the dough over to enclose the filling.
  • Place the tubes, seam side down, on the greased (or parchment-lined) cookie sheet. Press down lightly to flatten. Repeat with remaining dough and filling.
  • Brush the tops with the egg wash and bake until light golden brown, about 15 minutes.
  • Let them cool, then cut with a sharp knife into cookie-sized pieces.

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