Michael's treat is not a cookie, it's fruit and cake!
- For the Dough
- 1 stick unsalted Butter; softened
- 1/2 cup Sugar
- 1 Egg
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla
- 1/4 teaspoon Orange Zest
- 1 1/2 cup Flour
- 1/4 teaspoon Baking Powder
- 1/2 teaspoon Salt
- For the Filling
- 1/2 cup Turkish Figs; stems removed
- 1/2 cup Black Mission Figs; stems removed
- 1 cup Water
- 1 Cinnamon Stick
- 1/4 cup Sugar
- 1/4 cup fresh squeezed Orange Juice
- 1/2 teaspoon Orange Zest
- For the Dough:
- In the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the Butter and beat on medium speed. Add the Sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Scrape down the sides and add the Egg, beating well to incorporate. Next add the Vanilla and Orange Zest. In a separate bowl, mix together the Flour, Baking Powder and Salt. Add this mixture to the creamed Butter mixture and mix just to combine. Shape in to a disk and refrigerate for 2 hours or until thoroughly chilled and slightly hardened. In the meantime make your filling.
- For the Filling:
- Place the Figs in a medium sauce pot. Add the Water, Cinnamon Stick, Salt and Sugar and bring the mixture to a gentle boil. Continue to boil, stirring occasionally for 12-15 minutes, until the liquid is reduced and sticky and the Figs are fully hydrated. Turn the heat off and let sit for 10 minutes until no longer steaming.
- Remove the Cinnamon Stick and pour the mixture in to a food processor. Add the fresh Orange Juice and Zest and puree until smooth. Pour into a bowl and let cool completely.
- Preheat your oven to 375°F.
- Take your dough out of the fridge, cut it in half and place one half back in the fridge while you work with the other. Roll out on a lightly Floured surface into roughly a 9x11” rectangle. Trim the sides then cut in to 3 strips so you end up with 4 long rectangles (3 ½” wide). Transfer the strips to a parchment lined sheet tray and place back in the refrigerator to firm up (It will be easier to handle this way). Repeat this process with the other half of the dough until you have a tray of strips cut and refrigerated.
- To assemble:
- Line a baking tray with a silpat or parchment paper. Remove only 2-3 strips of dough at a time from the fridge (because the dough gets soft quickly). Place the strips on a lightly Floured surface and spoon some of the filling down the middle (maybe put in a piping bag). Flatten slightly with the back of the spoon, smoothing in to a long line. Using an offset spatula, bring up the edge closest to you and fold it over the filling. Bring the other edge up over the center as well, creating a tri-fold. Roll over so the seam side is down and very carefully transfer to your prepared tray.
- With the palm of your hand, flatten the log slightly so it is more of a square log. Repeat until you’ve used all of your dough strips and filling. Bake for about 20 minutes, until slightly golden brown and puffed. Remove from the oven, let set for a minute or 2, then cut in to 2” cookies. Cool completely then store in an airtight container.
**The cookies are initially crisp like shortbread, but overnight become soft-mimicking the traditional fig newton.