These are a homage to my late, dear father-in-law, Nathan, who adored them. He always said they were a cure for a cold! Maybe not, but they are delicious, comforting and popular with young and old. This recipe makes about 65 dainty rolls, but as each one is little more than a mouthful, they disappear in no time. They keep well, and can be offered to visitors with a coffee at any time of the day. This recipe uses dried figs, so you can make them throughout the year. But for a change, substitute other dried fruit such as prunes or dates.
● 450g finely chopped dried figs, stalks removed
● 450ml water
● 1 vanilla pod deseeded and seeds added to figs
● Juice of ½ lemon
● 250g butter or margarine
● 170g icing sugar
● Grated zest of 1 lemon
● 2 medium free-range organic eggs, beaten
● 550g plain flour
● Cover baking sheet with baking parchment. Preheat your oven to 180°C, 350°F, gas mark 4.
● Simmer the figs, vanilla seeds, water and juice until tender. Process to a thick paste.
● Cream the butter or margarine with the sugar and zest until light.
● Beat in all but 2 tablespoons of the egg.
● Fold in the flour to make a soft dough. Cover in cling-wrap. Chill for a minimum of 30 minutes.
● Roll out pastry to form a large rectangle. Cut into four long pieces.
● Spread fig mixture thickly down the centres of each length. Roll lengthways like Swiss rolls, tucking in rough edges and cutting into bite-sized pieces.
● Lay on baking sheet and brush with remaining egg. Bake for 30 mins until golden.