- Nonstick cooking spray
- 1/4 cup butter, softened
- 1/2 cup sugar or sugar substitute blend* equivalent to 1/2 cup sugar
- 1teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 cup refrigerated or frozen egg product, thawed, or 2 eggs
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
- 1teaspoon finely shredded lemon peel
- 1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup finely chopped, stemmed dried mission figs**
- 2ounces white baking chocolate (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon shortening (optional)
MethodLightly coat a large cookie sheet with nonstick cooking spray or line with parchment paper; set aside. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter with an electric mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds. Add sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and ginger, beating until combined. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Beat in cornmeal and lemon peel. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Using a wooden spoon, stir in the remaining flour and the figs.
Recipe Tip*Sugar Substitutes: Choose from Splenda Sugar Blend for Baking or Equal Sugar Lite. Follow package directions to use product amount equivalent to 1/2 cup sugar. *Sugar Substitutes: Per Serving with Substitute: same as above, except 63 cal., 10 g. carbo. Exchanges: 0.5 other carb. Carb Choices: 0.5 **Test Kitchen Tip: Use a food processor to finely chop figs, using several on-off turns until finely chopped.
- 375g pack all-butter puff pastry, thawed if frozen
- 6 fresh figs
- 25g butter, melted
- 2 tbsp icing sugar, plus extra for dusting
- 2 tbsp raspberry or bramble jelly
- pistachio ice cream (see 'goes well with...' below), or crème fraîche, to serve
- Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Line a large baking sheet with baking parchment. Divide the pastry into 6 pieces. Roll out each piece to the thickness of a £1 coin and cut into a 11-12cm round, using a cutter or saucer as a guide. Place on the baking sheet and mark 1cm in from the edge, taking care not to cut right through the pastry. Fork over the pastry inside the marked line.
- Slice each fig and arrange, overlapping, inside the marked line of the tartlets. Brush with the butter and sprinkle with icing sugar. Can now be chilled for up to 5 hrs. Bake for 18-20 mins until the pastry is crisp and golden on the edges.
- Warm the jelly in a small pan, brush over the tartlets, then dust with more icing sugar. Serve warm from the oven or at room temperature, with Pistachio ice cream (see 'Goes well with...') or crème fraîche.
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 750g/1lb 10oz boned pork shoulder, trimmed of excess fat, cut into 7-8 large chunks
- 1 onion, chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, crushed
- 2cm piece ginger, grated
- 1 tsp each cumin seeds and coriander seeds, lightly crushed
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- ¼ tsp smoked paprika
- ½ tsp dried oregano
- 2 tsp wine or cider vinegar
- 200ml beer
- 1 tbsp light muscovado sugar
- 1 small cinnamon stick
- 2 cloves
- 140g plain flour
- 75g fine or medium cornmeal
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 2 tbsp sunflower oil
- 2 ripe avocados, diced
- 12 cherry tomatoes, roughly chopped
- 6 spring onions, sliced
- 1 red chilli, finely chopped
- 1 rounded tbsp chopped coriander
- juice of ½ lime
- lime wedges, soured cream and extra coriander to serve
- Heat oven to 150C/130C fan/gas 2. Put the oil in a solid bottomed casserole dish over a medium-high heat and brown the pork in batches. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and set aside.
- Add the onions and cook gently until soft but not coloured, about 5 mins. Tip in the garlic and ginger and cook for 1 min more. Add the spices and oregano and cook for 30 secs more until aromatic.
- Pour in the vinegar, beer and sugar then bring to the boil and simmer for 1 min. Remove from the heat, tip into a blender and process until smooth. Pour the sauce back into the pan and add the browned pork, cinnamon and cloves, and season well. Cover with a tight fitting lid and cook on the middle shelf of the oven for about 2½-3 hrs until the meat is really tender and falls into shreds in the sauce.
- While the pork is cooking, prepare the pancakes. Tip the flour and cornmeal into a bowl with the baking powder and ½ tsp salt. Pour in the oil and 125-150ml of warm water and mix until the dough is firm, but not dry. Tip out on the work surface and knead for 1 min until smooth. Return the dough to the bowl, cover and leave to rest for 30 mins.
- Heat a frying pan over a medium heat. Divide the dough into 18 even-size pieces. Lightly flour the work surface and roll each one into a thin, neat disc roughly 12cm in diameter. Keep the remaining dough covered with cling film to stop it drying out.
- Cook the pancakes in the hot pan for about 30 secs until the underside is dry and just starting to brown in places. Flip the pancake over and cook the other side for about 30 secs. Remove from the pan and keep warm, wrapped in a clean cloth. Repeat with the remaining dough.
- Combine the salsa ingredients in a bowl and season to taste. Shred pork into sauce, then spoon onto each pancake and top with the avocado salsa and soured cream. Scatter with chopped coriander and squeeze over lime.
- 4 tbsp clear honey
- 1 tsp thyme leaves
- 1 tbsp cider vinegar
- 2 tbsp rapeseed oil
- 2 tbsp hazelnuts, toasted and roughly chopped
- 1 small fennel bulb, trimmed and finely sliced (use a mandolin if you have one)
- 2 handfuls rocket leaves
- 200g Stilton, thinly sliced
- 2 ripe figs
- Put the honey and thyme leaves in a small pan, then gently warm together for 2 mins – the honey shouldn’t get hot enough to bubble. Set aside to cool. Make a dressing by whisking together the cider vinegar and rapeseed oil with some seasoning.
- To serve, gently toss the chopped hazelnuts, fennel and rocket with the dressing. Divide the cheese between 4 plates, add a fig half to each, then a pile of the salad. Finally drizzle the thyme-infused honey over the figs and cheese.