Fig Noor Bread Cake Recipe
This fruity bread dessert is so delicious you won't believe it only requires 5 ingredients. No egg, no baking time and no more than 30 minutes prep time.
I cut black sesame and caraway Noor bread into small pieces and soaked them in hot fig preserves. Once the preserves were chilled, the cake jelled into one entity. I served the fig Noor bread cake with tangy crème fraîche for richness and pineapple and raspberries for a touch of acidity to balance the sweetness of the preserves.
Last weekend, my good friend Laura, who's a jam expert, came over and picked 15 pounds of Black Mission figs in our garden. Aria and I helped gather as much fruit as possible so she could prepare her yummy fruit preserves. While selecting the ripe fruits, we chatted and Laura told me she would try a new technique.
The idea was to find a method that doesn't require pectin. To make the preserves, Laura started by combining water and lemon juice. After bringing the liquid to a boil, she stirred in sugar and brought the temperature to 250°F. Finally, she added the figs and vanilla beans and cooked the mixture at 220 degrees until jelled.
I also have an announcement for this weekend. I'm going to be making a stop in Houston, Texas for an interview with Cleverley Stone on CBS Radio 650 AM at 10am Saturday. Tune in if you can, because a lucky listener will win a free copy of my cookbooks. Then I head to Barnes & Noble to sign my just released cookbook,Banh Mi, and my previous book, Haute Potato. Make sure you stay to sample a dish featured in Banh Mi! Hope you stop by and say hi!
Yields: 4 servings1 vanilla bean
1 pound fresh Black Mission figs (13 units)
2 cups granulated sugar
juice of half a lemon, freshly squeezed
1 sheet California Lavash Noor bread
For the vanilla: Using a paring knife, scrape and gather all the grains of the vanilla bean (see tips).
Prepping the bread: Slice the bread into long strips. Cut in half lengthwise and cut the rest into 3" pieces.
Making fig preserves: Quarter the figs and set them aside. Combine ¼cup cold water and lemon juice in a small, non-reactive pot. Bring to a boil, add the sugar. Cook until a candy thermometer should read 250°F, while stirring constantly with a wooden spoon to make sure the ingredients don't stick to the bottom. Add the figs and vanilla grains and cook until the thermometer reads 220°F. Another test to see if the preserves are done is to place a drop of them on a cold plate. After it cools down (2 minutes), if you tilt the plate and it stays in place, it's ready.
Spray the spring-form pan with water. Line it with plastic wrap. Spoon in a layer of the preserves without any fruit. Cover with a layer of bread. Spoon the fruit (and less of the hot liquid) over the bread, making sure to press the bread to ensure it's covered in fig preserves. Repeat until all the bread is used. You will most likely have a half-pint jar of leftover fig preserves (store in the refrigetaror). Press the cake to ensure it cools to room temperature and chill in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours.
Unmold the cake and discard the plastic wrap.Cut into quarters. Serve with a spoonful of crème fraîche and freshly cut fruits.
For more crunch, you could also garnish the dessert with slivered almonds.
You can flavor the fig preserves with almost anything. Rosemary and fig pair wonderfully together, as do black teas (instead of using plain water).
Noor bread is made with whole grains and it's studded with caraway and black sesame seeds. It’s a great choice if you want to make a healthy dish.
After scraping the grains of vanilla, don't discard the remaining vanilla bean. Just place it in a jar and cover it with regular granulated sugar. Let it sit for a few weeks and you'll have nice, fragrant vanilla sugar.
I used a (4-½") mini round non-stick spring-form pan for easy release.
Laura's note: With this method, the fruit and sugar mixture almost immediately reached 220°F, which used to take an hour the old way of cooking the fruit first and then adding the sugar.