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Name of Event

Christmas

Cuisine From

Italy

Description

A traditional dessert/cake filled with blended figs, nuts and spices

Summary

Yield One cake
Preparation time 30-40 mins + 30 minutes resting for dough
Cooking time 40-45 minutes
Main Ingredient Figs

Ingredients

For the dough

  • 300 gms plain/all-purpose  flour
  • 150 gms sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2  tsp salt
  • 100 gms unsalted  butter
  • 2 eggs + 1 egg white for egg wash

For the filling

  • 500 gms dried figs
  • 50 gms chopped almonds
  • 150 gms honey
  • ½ Marsala wine
  • Juice and zest of 1/2  orange
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1 clove 

Garnish

  • Unsalted pistachios or garnish of choice.

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Instructions

Making the filling.

  1. Soak the figs in Marsala and orange juice. Leave for 15 minutes.
  2. Combine the figs with the other ingredients for the filling. Make sure all the ingredients are well mixed.
  3. Set aside

Making the dough

  1. On a flat surface mix together the flour, sugar, vanilla, salt and baking powder.
  2. Chop the cold butter and rub into the dry ingredients until the dough resembles bread crumbs
  3. Add  the eggs and mix thoroughly and bring the dough together to form a ball. If the dough is to dry, add a few drops of water to moisten.
  4. Fold and press with the palm of your hands; if dough is sticky, add some more flour. Do not over mix.  
  5. When dough forms into a single mass, cover with a plastic wrap, set aside, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes (Overnight is best).
  6. Roll the dough out into a long flat rectangle between two sheets of baking paper.

Bringing it all together

  1. Place the filling in the middle of the dough and use the paper to fold the sides over it.
  2. Turn the roll around so that the fold is at the bottom of the cake and join the ends to form a wreath/ring.
  3. Make small slits in the side of the pastry with a knife or fork for presentation. (Optional)
  4. Place the cake on a baking pan, top with pistachios  and baste it with egg white. 
  5. Bake the cake at 170 C / 340 F for 40 minutes until golden brown. 

For more Christmas recipes from around the world as well as restaurants to enjoy Christmas lunch/dinner, gift ideas, cookbooks, how to save money on holiday travel visit our Christmas ideas page.