Not a Newton….
Brrrrrrr, I guess winter can’t make up its mind if it wants to come, or go! Our temperatures have been so up and down it is crazy. Over the weekend it was almost 70 degrees, then yesterday I woke up to wind and rain, and it pretty much stayed that way all day long. This morning it is 43 degrees out and it is supposed to keep getting colder throughout the week. I remember last year winter came late, but when it did, it made its presence known. On those days there is no better excuse to stay in and bake, so I did!
I grabbed a package of dried figs a couple of weeks ago when I was at the grocery store with good intentions, but until yesterday they were still sitting in my pantry. I had tasted one and was kind of turned off by the texture and lack of flavor, but I was determined there must be a way to make them edible. I mean come on, look how many years Fig Newtons have been around! Those were one of my favorite cookies as a kid, but my mom rarely bought them because they were so expensive. These cookies aren’t that expensive, or that difficult to make. The figs only cost $2.00 which is less than an entire package of Fig Newtons.
I did my calorie comparison and mine are a little higher in calories, but lower in sugar, (Not to mention refined sugar free!) and you get all the vitamins that the packaged brand doesn’t have. Plus, you don’t have all of those funky words in the ingredients that you can’t pronounce. 😉
I’ve mentioned it before, I hate making anything that I have to chill, but because the dough needs to be firm, chilling is a must. Some people chill it for several hours to overnight. I didn’t have that kind of time so I tossed it in the freezer. After 30 minutes it was ready to go! I also didn’t use a food processor for my filling. I went without one for so long that I just did everything by hand. You can use one if you want, but I found that using a wooden spoon works just as well and you have a nicer texture then it being a paste. If you toss your dough in the freezer and boil your figs and raisins while it is chilling, you will be done in no time. I am not going to tell you that these taste like Fig Newtons because they don’t, but they are yummy. I chose to keep them simple, but if you want to add a little cinnamon to the filling, or the dough, you’ll get a more Newton flavor.
There isn’t anything really complicated about this, actually it is a lot easier then I anticipated. When it comes to the dough, it will be like cookie dough until after it is chilled. The filling is easy, all you have to do is chop it up with the spoon as it boils, then smash it into a paste when it is done. It will be cool enough to handle once you are done rolling out the dough. Just roll your dough out on a floured surface, into a rectangle, place the filling down the center, then fold the sides over. Flip the dough over, seem side down, and you can either cut it into 24 bite size cookies (52 calories each), or 16 big cookies (A little bigger than a Newton) for 78 calories each. Toss them in the oven on a baking sheet and 12 minutes, you are done. The cookies will firm as they cool, and they do taste much better the second day. Big or small, grab some coffee, or tea, some fig cookies, sit back, relax, and enjoy!
What is your favorite cookie?
Soft Fig Cookies
By Angie Gouchenour
16 big cookies
24 bite size cookies
8 Tablespoons light butter- room temperature
¼ cup Truvia zero calorie sweetener
2 teaspoons vanilla flavoring or extract
2 Tablespoons egg whites
¼ cup + 1 Tablespoon all-purpose white flour
¼ cup + 1 Tablespoon stone ground wheat flour
10 dried figs
¼ cup raisins
1 cup water
2 teaspoons orange juice
In a medium bowl cream together the butter and Truvia
Stir in the vanilla and egg whites
Add the white and stone ground flour until completely incorporated
Wrap in wax paper and toss in the freezer for 30 minutes, or the refrigerator for several hours
In a small sauce pan combine figs, raisins, and water
Bring to a boil
Once they start to soften mash with a wooden spoon
Boil until all the water is gone
Remove from the heat and continue to mash the fig mixture until it is a paste
Add orange juice and stir
Pre heat oven to 350’f
Remove the dough from the freezer, or refrigerator
Roll dough out into a rectangle on a floured surface (I like to fold it into thirds once just to get nice square ends)
Place fig mixture down the center from end to end
Fold one side over the mixture, then overlap the other side
Flip cookie log over onto its seem and cut it into 16 or 24 pieces
Place on a parchment paper covered cookie sheet
Bake in pre heated oven for 12 minutes
Remove from the oven and place on a cooling rack
(Cookies will firm as they cool)
78 calories (1 big cookie)
52 calories (1 small cookie)