This fig cake is a decadent, no-holds-barred take on the traditional Spanish fig cake called Pan de Higo. With tart-sweet cherries, almonds, raw cacao nibs and a shot of amaretto, it is a delicious addition to a dessert tray or charcuterie board. Want a taste of the south? You’ll love the orange, pecans and whisky flavors in my Southern Fig Cake.
2 full cups whole dried figs (10 oz)
1 3/4 cups Deglet dates (7 oz)
1/2 cup dried sweet cherries (2 oz)
1 tablespoon raw cacao nibs
1/2 cup almonds (2 oz)
1 tablespoon amaretto
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon celtic sea salt
Trim hard stem from figs. Cut dates in half to make sure the pit is gone. Measure whiskey, essential oil, and vanilla extract into one small container. Have measured sea salt ready.
In a food processor, pulse whole almonds until coarsely crushed. Add figs, dates, cherries, and cacao and pulse until nuts are pulverized and dried fruits are in tiny pieces. (My processor does this in about 20-30 seconds.) While processor is running, pour liquid through the chute, then sprinkle sea salt. Stop the processor.
Line a 2 cup bread pan with 2 strips of waxed paper, one to fit lengthwise and one to fit crosswise. Edges of waxed paper should be longer than the bread pan width. Spoon fig cake mixture into the bread pan. using the overlapping waxed paper strips, press the mixture into the pan firmly. Remove the cake from the pan. Remove waxed paper except for a small piece for the cake to rest on.
Turn oven on as low as possible. (My lowest temperature is 150 degrees, and the oven turns on before this mark. I’m estimating the temperature to be about 130 degrees. You can also use a food dehydrator set at the “fruit” setting of about 135 degrees.) Place cakes on a rack on a cookie sheet. Place in warm oven. Let cakes remain in the warm oven 3-4 hours to dry them out a bit. Store in a cool, dry place or refrigerate. To serve, slice thinly.