Fig Newtons

Homemade Fig Newtons are just like the store bought versions but without all the preservatives! 

Fig Newtons ~ Savory Simple

Food can be such a powerful thing.  It brings us pleasure, comfort, guilt and even sadness.  It can energize our bodies or make us feel ill.  It can attach itself to memories, taking us back to our childhood or a happy day with friends.  I’ll always remember the roasted gazpacho from my wedding dinner.  I remember being in college, sitting around with friends eating Cap’n Crunch Berries while watching TV (I confess I was not much of a cook in college).  As a teenager, one of my favorite meals was tomato soup with grilled cheese.  Fancy stuff!  I put ketchup on almost everything.  My grandma made great pistachio cake and my mother was known for excellent blintz souffle and sweet pecan kugel.  As a child I definitely had a sweet tooth.  These days if I really want to transport into the past I’ll go for graham crackers, oatmeal cream pies or Fig Newtons.  Not all at once.

What are some of your food memories?  Share in the comment section.

 

Fig Newtons ~ Savory Simple
Print
Fig Newtons
Prep Time
45 mins
Cook Time
2 hr 15 mins
Total Time
3 hr
 

Homemade Fig Newtons are just like the store bought versions but without all the preservatives!

Course: Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: American
Servings: 15 -20 cookies
Author: Jennifer Farley
Ingredients
For the dough:
  • 3 ounces all-purpose flour
  • 2 ounces whole wheat flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • just a pinch of cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • 3 ounces unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 3/4 ounces sugar
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon orange juice
For the filling:
  • 6 ounces dried black Mission figs
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/2 tablespoon honey
  • 2 teaspoons orange juice
  • pinch of cinnamon
Instructions
  1. Whisk together the flours, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and zest.
  2. In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  3. Add the egg yolks, one at a time, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula as needed.
  4. Add the honey, vanilla and orange juice.
  5. Add the flour mixture and mix until just combined. Make sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl so that everything is incorporated.
  6. Transfer the dough to plastic wrap. Seal well and flatten into a round disk. Allow to chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, preferably 4 (I often do this step the night before and allow the dough to chill overnight).
  7. Make the filling while the dough chills. Combine all of the ingredients in a food processor and pulse until smooth, scraping down the sides periodically. Make sure not to leave any clumps.
  8. Transfer the dough to a pastry bag. I found it easiest to work without a tip, but the original recipe recommends a plain basket weave tip. If you don't have a pastry bag you can use a disposable plastic baggie and snip away one corner.
  9. Once the dough is chilled, preheat the oven to 325 and prepare a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  10. Roll the dough out onto a floured surface. Also sprinkle some flour on top, the dough will become sticky very quickly as the butter melts. It's ideal to work quickly, but you can always chill the dough again if it becomes difficult to work with. You want to roll the dough very thin (the original recipe calls for 1/4 inch, but I didn't measure.) Keep in mind that it will be folded over onto the filling, so the cookies can become too thick very easily.
  11. Use a pizza cutter to create 3 1/4 inch wide strips. Remove any excess flour with a pastry brush and pipe the filling along the center, leaving room of the sides. If needed, you can use a small offset spatula to even out the filling. Fold both sides over to create a log. Turn the cookie over onto the parchment-lined tray.
  12. Allow to chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
  13. Bake for 12-15 minutes, until the logs have browned slightly and firmed up a bit.
  14. Remove from the oven and slice into 1 inch cookies. Transfer to an airtight container while hot to allow them to steam slightly.
  15. Enjoy at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.
Recipe Notes

Adapted from BraveTart.

 

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  • I do agree, a lot of memories are built around food. I felt quite nostalgic when reading about your college days. I remember us eating our mothers homemade rusks at 3 in the morning when i was at university. Now those were the days… Beautiful photos! Thanks for sharing.

  • I love it when something traditionally bought in a package at a store can be recreated lovingly at home! I’m not even a fan of Fig Newtons, but your picture makes me want to eat about 500 of ’em… Some of my favourite food memories are of Maritime chowders, and old-school desserts. My mother was (and still is) a fantastic cook…

  • I agree, a lot of memories are built around food. It’s amazing how tasting a dish can transport you back in time. Whenever I have minestrone soup I’m instantly transported back to the minestrone my Nan made when I was little, and it’s the first thing I crave when I’m sick because it feels so comforting.

    Love your gorgeous fig newtons. They look delicious. I’d love one with a cup of tea!

  • I’m so impressed with your homemade fig newtons. Beth asked about using dried apricots. The company used to sell apricot or peach newtons, I’m not sure which.

  • Fig Newtons remind me so distinctly of my grandma. She used to always have them and for awhile as a kid, I loathed them. But as I grew older, I realized they’re so good! The crust is so tender and can’t be beat. I’m partial to the apple ones–mmm. These look identical to the cookie if not better :)

  • Your fig newtons are adorable! (I love homemade versions of store-bought treats!)
    I think my favorite food memory is making cookies during the holidays with my mom. :-)

  • Amazing! Fig Rolls. I’ve been wanting to make these for ages and seeing you make them so perfectly makes me want to follow suit even more :D

  • I so aggree with you; food means sharing to me, and that what makes it special, such a bond. Sitting around the table, helping mum making stuffed vine leaves or drinking Turkish coffee together, just priceless. Loved your fig newtons :)

  • Never thought of homemade fig newtons but you’ve got me to thinking it now. And you’re so very right….food is powerful powerful stuff. :) And more lasting memories than I could ever recount! But croissants and mochas each morning with my husband on a too-brief Paris trip I’ll put near the top.

  • Many years ago my hubby & oldest son asked me to make Fig Newtons because we had a small fig tree (that the dog eventually ate) in the backyard … I told them that they were crazy! Now, you made me want to make them!

    P.S. Graham crackers were always in our cupboard.

  • Fig newtons were definitely a childhood favourite for me — that, and sesame snacks! These look like they’ve just come out of a package (and I mean that in a good way) — and I didn’t even know you could make em at home. :)

  • My childhood food memories aren’t nearly as refined ;) Cookie cakes just take me back, lol! Like the kind form the mall. Quality, I know! But your fig newtons look faaantastic – I love them!

  • Wow they look amazing! Pancakes always remind me of my Dad, he used to take us camping and make them on a tin can over a little fire. Burnt on the outside, gooey on the inside- still how I like them (gross I know). And choc chip cookies always remind me of my Grandma.

  • Looks like I already have a solution for my figs on the fridge, thanks for this recipe and visiting my blog

  • that’s brilliant! homemade fig newtons!! It wasn’t one of those snacks I grew up with because I lived in Asia, but my friend here in the uk goes absolutely nuts for them. And they aren’t the best things for you to get what with all the additives going into the processed junk version. This is great!

  • I didn’t like figs before but now I adore them after becoming an adult. Looks yum! Food memories… I have a lot especially when I came to the US when I was 20… I pretty much lived with just mocha and bagels… I loved bagels so much (now we have in Japan but not back then). I also loved the sun dried tomatoes with anything! I still enjoy all of them. =)

  • Food Memory: Spanish tortilla always takes me back to the beach during July/Aug in southern Spain. I would always eat a fat piece of it sandwiched in between rustic bread with a beach towel wrapped around myself immediately after going for a swim. While enjoying the tortilla sandwich, I usually zoned out and stared at the horizon. Food is powerful indeed!

  • Wow they look so delicious with an afternoon cup of tea ! My favourite food memories are when my grandmother or mum cooked dinner for us as children. They were Peranakan so lots of spices that used to make me sneeze when they fried it :)

  • This looks amazing! I love anything with figs and I loved eating these bars while growing up too.
    Food does connect us with childhood, at least I have a lot of memories of my grandma’ making sweet treats for me when I have sleepovers.

  • Ha! Food memories. I remember my grandmother visiting and making a batch of cupcakes with colorful frosting… and letting us lick the bowl (hence the sweet tooth!). I remember my mother’s brown sugar patties. She made a square out of pie crust, placed brown sugar and butter in the center, folded it like an envelop and popped it in the oven. This was best when she accidentally left it to bake too long. Your Savory Fig Newtons remind me of these. They look like deliciously sweet little pockets.

  • Graham crackers and fig newtons take me back, too. But I’ve come to think that grown-up, healthier homemade adaptations of these childhood favorites suit my adult taste buds. These look ans sound fantastic.

    We’re collecting childhood favorites on the Shine Supper Club this month and a recipe like this would be perfect. Hope you’ll join us!

  • My poppa has a deep love for raspberry fig newtons… but the company has discontinued them!!
    Do you have a suggestion for altering the filling to include raspberry? I just have no idea where to begin but i would love to recreate them for him and yours look amazing!!