Italian Fig Cookies

After 15 years of doing software development, I decided it’s time for a change for me. An opportunity came up at work and I took it. I guess you could say it’s a bit of a career change, but I’m still in IT, so it’s not a complete career change. However, for me, something totally new and I’m looking forward to it. Most people are scared of change, but I love change, I love to learn something new and expand my knowledge. Now, I have a new team and this team has a tradition that every week at the team meeting, it is someone’s turn to bring some snacks. Well, how can I not like a challenge such as this. The first week that I was supposed to attend this weekly meeting, the lady whose turn it was to bring the snacks, cancelled due to her being sick, so I volunteered. I figured here’s my chance to show my baking skills. :)

I went home that night and thought hard about what to make that was impressive. Now these people have already tried my peanut butter and bacon cookies and the s’mores whoopie pies at the last baking contest we had at work.  So I had to think real hard, what can beat peanut butter and bacon cookies, I mean those cookies were unbelievable. I’ve had these dry figs for a week now, my husband goes through phases, when he finds something he likes he’ll buy a lot of it, so we had like 5 packs of dry figs. Now I love figs and I love fig newtons, so these cookies are probably as close as you can get to making your own fig newtons at home. I’ve been wanting to make these since before Christmas and I thought this was a perfect opportunity to make them. I was right. They were very successful. This batch makes quite a few cookies, so I brought lots to work, even had some to give to my old team. These fig cookies are really delicious, if you love figs, you’ll love these cute little cookies.

This cookie dough is made a bit differently, because we’re going to use a food processor instead of a mixer. So in your food processor add the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Pulse a couple times just to mix all the dry ingredients. Add the butter and pulse about 20 times. Next, add the eggs and pulse until the dough forms into a ball. Remove the dough from the food processor and knead it a bit on a floured surface. Shape the dough into a log and wrap it in plastic.

Place the dough in the refrigerator until we make the filling. First thing you need to do is cut the stems off the figs and chop them up. This is probably the part that took me the longest with these cookies.

Now there are a lot of ingredients here, so I made this in two batches because my food processor is not a big one. But basically you need to put all the figs and the rest of the filling ingredients in the food processor and pulse it until finely chopped. One thing I would suggest, is that it might be easier, though I haven’t tried this, but it might be easier to pulse the figs first and then add the rest of the ingredients. In either case, the mixture needs to be a thick paste. Scrape the filling onto a lightly floured surface and knead to shape into a log.

At this point you can preheat your oven to 350 F degrees. Cut the filling log into 10 pieces and cut the cookie dough log into 10 pieces as well. Using one piece of dough at a time, roll it into a 3 by 12 inch rectangle.  Now you can roll each piece of filling into a 12 inch rope, or just arrange with your hands in the middle of the dough as you see below.

Pull the dough around the filling and pinch the ends making a seam. Flatten the roll using a spatula or just your hands.

Cut the log into 6 pieces.

Repeat with remaining pieces of dough and filling. Place the cookies on an ungreased baking sheet.

Bake the cookies for about 15 minutes or until lightly golden in color. This will make about 5 dozen cookies.

You may also dust these cookies with icing sugar if you wish.

Italian Fig Cookies

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 1 hour

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours

Yield: 5 dozen cookies

Italian Fig Cookies

Ingredients:

    Cookie dough
  • 4 cups all purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 8 oz cold butter
  • 4 large eggs
  • The filling
  • 12 oz dry figs
  • 1/2 cup pecans, chopped
  • 1/3 cup apricot jam
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins
  • zest from one orange
  • 2 oz semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup good rum
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Instructions:

  1. In your food processor add the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Pulse a couple just to mix all the dry ingredients. Add the butter and pulse about 20 times. Next, add the eggs and pulse until the dough forms into a ball. Remove the dough from the food processor and knead it a bit on a floured surface. Shape the dough into a log and wrap it in plastic.
  2. Put flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a food processor fitted with the metal blade; pulse just to mix. Add the butter pieces and pulse 20 times. Add eggs and pulse until dough forms a ball on the blade. Remove from processor and knead briefly on a lightly floured work surface until smooth. Shape dough into a log and wrap in plastic.
  3. Put all the figs and the rest of the filling ingredients in the food process and pulse it until finely chopped.
  4. Preheat your oven to 350 F degrees.
  5. Cut the filling log into 10 pieces and cut the cookie dough log into 10 pieces as well. Using one piece of dough at a time, toll it into a 3 by 12 inch rectangle. Now you can roll each piece of filling into a 12 inch rope, or just arrange with your hands in the middle of the dough.
  6. Pull the dough around the filling and pinch the ends making a seam. Flatten the roll using a spatula or just your hands. Cut the log into 6 pieces.
  7. Repeat with remaining pieces of dough and filling. Place the cookies on an ungreased baking sheet.
  8. Bake the cookies for about 15 minutes or until lightly golden in color.
http://www.jocooks.com/bakery/cookies-bakery/italian-fig-cookies/

Enjoy!

Comments

  1. Nadia says

    Can you make this recipe with fresh figs? My parents have a fig tree that gives lots of fruit every summer, and this will be a great way of using them all up before they go bad.

    • says

      Hi Nadia,
      I have not made these with fresh figs but I would imagine you could, the only thing I’m a bit afraid of is that maybe the mixture will be too soft, but if that’s the case I think you could add either a bit of flour or more pecans. If you try it out, I would love to know how they turned out.

  2. Gaby says

    Is it possible to make this recipe without a food processor? yes I know not having a food processor sounds weird but I am a poor college student. Also do you think I can replace the apricot jam with a homemade mixed red berries jam?

    • says

      Hi Gaby,
      Hmm, you could definitely make the cookie dough without a food processor, just not sure how you’d make the filling without one. If your chopping skills are great you could just chop them up. I don’t know how well it would work in a blender, never tried it and if you’re using a blender you need more liquid. I would just go with chopping everything, might take you a while though. As far as the jam, you could really use any jam you like, the flavor will just be a bit different.
      Good luck and let me know how it goes.
      Jo

    • says

      Yes, I can always find dry figs in my grocery store, I have a hard time finding fresh figs, but there are always dry figs around.

  3. says

    Oh wow, these sound incredible. Growing up, Fig Newtons were one of my favorite treats and these sound like a great and healthier homemade alternative. I love the addition of chocolate chips to the filling. That just totally upped their awesome factor. Thanks for the great recipe. One question, though. What would be a good substitute for the rum? Or should I just leave it out and not worry about replacing it with anything? I don’t drink alcohol so I don’t have any rum just hanging around. A shame, I know :)

    • says

      Hi there,
      You could use a tsp of rum extract, or if you don’t have that either, I would suggest a little bit of orange juice, just because you might need that extra liquid in the filling.
      Let me know how they turn out. Good luck. :)

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