Thursday 20 September 2012

Fig and Vanilla Demerara Crunch Cake

Soft vanilla cake punctuated with jammy figs

Fairly short post for this one - life and blogging are pretty incompatible at the moment. Thank goodness I have delicious cake to make it all a bit easier. I haven't ever had fresh figs before (well, not to my knowledge), so when the One Ingredient challenge was announced this month (hosted this month by Laura of How to Cook Good Food and cohosted by Nazima of Working London Mummy) I decided that now was the time to try baking them into a cake - they just look so plump and inviting.

Because figs are also right in season now, I am also entering this into 'Simple and in Season' hosted this month by Katie of Feeding Boys and a Firefighter and founded by Ren of Fabulicious Food

I think this worked really well - the figs looked really attractive on the top of the cake, happily not sinking too much and the cake below was wonderfully soft and moist - full of vanilla and muscovado flavour. The figs were crunchy and chewy, as is also the way of the dried version of the fruit, which I am really rather partial to. I think this would make a great family dessert served warm with custard.

Jammy figs

 I think I ought to try fresh figs in another way too though, perhaps raw to get a better appreciation of their subtle flavour. Have you got a favourite way of enjoying fresh figs? Do let me know!

Before baking

Fig and Vanilla Demerara Crunch Cake
150g butter, softened
75g light muscovado sugar
75g caster sugar
50g plain flour
150g self raising flour
3 medium eggs (55g each)
2tsp vanilla extract
3 fat figs, cut into 6 pieces each
demerara sugar for sprinkling

- Preheat the oven to gas 4/180C. Grease and line an 8"/20cm square tin with parchment paper.
- Cream the butter and sugars together until light and fluffy.
- Add the eggs, vanilla extract and flour and beat until well combined.
- Spoon into the prepared tin and level out, then place the figs onto the mixture. You can do rows like I did, or scatter randomly.
- Scatter demerara sugar over the surface.
- Bake for 50 minutes to an hour until a cake tester inserted comes out clean.
- Turn out onto a wire rack and allow to cool, or alternatively, enjoy warm with a puddle of custard for a lovely autumnal dessert. 


Joanna @ Zeb Bakes said...

I love figs and I want your cake and I have never had them cooked because Brian hates them with a vengeance, so I eat them off the tree in the garden and they are all gone now. We planted a brown Turkey fig when we moved here six years ago and I have figs every day for a few weeks once they start to ripen late August/September. Apparently you can grow it in a pot, it likes having its roots kept close about it. But I would like your cake, it looks very smart indeed!!!!

Suelle said...

Just the name of your cake sounds so appetising, and it looks as good as it sounds!

Unknown said...

Super recipe, and love the topping. I'm adding this to my list of things to make. Yum!

Jacqueline Meldrum said...

What a beautiful looking cake. I have never added figs to a cake before. I usually eat them in salad. They go really well with feta. Try this salad.

cityhippyfarmgirl said...

I never eat fresh figs, and I'm really not sure why. I should look out for them more often. I like the sounds of this cake though, vanilla-y, moist, and fruity. Juuust the way I like it :-)

Unknown said...

That is a beautiful cake. So pretty. I love figs any way. Try roasting them with chicken or baking them with goats cheese. Mmmmm hungry now!

Chele said...

Yum - I have also never tried fresh figs so this cake sounds like the perfect introduction for me.

laura@howtocookgoodfood said...

I am so happy you have tried and liked figs. They are so delicious and I think they work perfectly in both sweet & savoury dishes. I made a lovely salad with them on my blog with rocket and smoked cheddar but they work well as a pizza topping or simply roasted and served with Greek yoghurt. The choices are endless!
Thanks so much for entering your beautiful fig cake into One Ingredient. I would definitely serve this with custard :-)xx

Alicia Foodycat said...

Oh yum! I love fresh figs with proscuitto, I've never had them fresh in a cake before! What a great recipe.

claire said...

IF fresh figs didnt have a terroble habit ofjumping straight into my mouth, i'd maybe try cooking with them! About four months or more before their season, I start to look forward with childish impatience. Do make a gorgeous soup with dried figs though -nice when i garnish it with fresh fig slices. Not a bad looking cake :)

Katie said...

The name alone sounds amazing. I love fresh figs, they taste wonderful when in season and those look fabulous!

Anonymous said...

The cake looks delicious. The figs peeking through the tops looks lovely.

Johanna GGG said...

This cake looks beautiful - I don't buy many fresh figs because I worry they will get too soft before I use them - but I have had them roasted in a syrup and served on french toast (or pancakes would do as well) which was lovely. I think they may have had some ricotta with them but not sure

Karen S Booth said...

SAVED! I have a VERY big fig tree and I am in need of new recipes for FIGS! LOVELY cake Caroline! Karen

The Caked Crusader said...

The way the figs sink into the top makes it such a beautiful cake

Unknown said...

Bookmarking it NOW!!! Figs are a sin! I love them! Great recipe!

Anne said...

I only tried fresh figs last year for the first time and loved them too, spotted some in the farm shop the other day but resisted as still quite expensive! Your cake looks delicious, really like the sound of the vanilla in with it

katie said...

Ooooh now then this looks good! A proper wedge of cake perfect for scoffing with a cuppa :-) Thanks for linking up this month.

Luxury Hampers said...

Figs are delicious and this cake looks like a gem! A great combination and a lovely treat. I might try this if I get a a bit time soon.

Choclette said...

I wanted one of your cupcakes to try as soon as I saw them and now I want a slice of this as well. I love figs in any shape or form, but I don't think I've ever had fresh figs baked into a cake, what a wonderful idea. Fresh figs go nicely with cheese, but If they are good ones I'm very happy to eat them just as they are.

Caroline said...

Joanna - I think you would really like this cake then. Our fig tree wasn't root bound and I'm sure that's why we never had any fruit off it. You are very lucky (and greenfingered!) to grown your own.

Suelle - thank you.

Nazima - I hope you like it!

Jac - thank you for the link. I will have to try them with feta - I was thinking of the fig cheese combo.

Brydie - yes, I eat far more dried figs than fresh.

Dom - oh yum, baked with cheese sounds great, thanks for the idea.

Chele - baking many things into a cake makes them better!

Laura - thanks for choosing figs and inspiring me to buy some, I have meant to for ages. Baked with yogurt sounds delicious, thank you for the idea.

Foodycat - thank you. My default setting is to add things to cake!

Claire - thanks! A soup with figs sounds very unusual!

Katie - thank you!

Londonbusybody - so glad you like the look of it.

Johanna - yes, ricotta sounds good. Lots of people have suggested cheese and figs!

Karen - thank you. I hope you like it if you make it.

CC - yes, there's something very attractive about the half sunken look isn't there.

Maria - thanks for stopping by. I hope you like the cake.

Anne - yes, the vanilla adds a nice flavour to the cake.

Katie - thanks.

LH - I hope you get a chance to make and enjoy this.

Choclette - I wish I could share a piece with you!

Katharine said...

This looks amazing and quite unusual! I love fresh figs and actually bought some yesterday as luck would have it so I'm off to the kitchen to try it now! Gorgeous!


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