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Whole Wheat Fig Bars

April 29, 2011

The day before Jonathan and I left Saint Louis, a good friend of mine presented me with some of the most amazing gifts- homemade whole wheat bread (with seeds!!), homemade apple butter, homemade canned peaches and a cookie cook book. I mean what?!  Seriously amazing gifts for a food-lover and also perfect for someone moving.  Who knew right?  A couple hard-boiled eggs and whole wheat bread slices suited us much fairer than stopping for bean burritos or… question mark.

As for the recipe today, this is an adaptation from the new cookie cook book- Maida Heatter’s Cookies.  I made her original recipe first.  Jonathan loved them, but he can handle more sweetness than I.  To me, the figs are nearly sweet enough solo.  I tested new ways to make this recipe and settled by switching completely to whole wheat, adding more flour, then dropping the sugar.  Make sure the “dried” figs are actually soft and moist.  Otherwise you will hurt your mouth trying to chew them.  Also, if you don’t care about making these vegan, substitute the arrowroot powder for two eggs, then subtract half the soy milk (2 Tablespoons).   If we were moving again soon, I would totally make these for the trip.  They seem to be a perfect travel cookie.

What are your favorite foods for traveling or places to stop for a meal?

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Whole Wheat Fig Bars
Makes 24 small bars
Fig Bar recipe adapted from Maida Heatter’s Cookies

Ingredients:
1 lb, or 2 generously packed cups dried brown figs (though dried, they should be soft and moist)
1 c. whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp arrowroot powder
1/3 c. brown sugar, packed
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 c. soy or almond milk
6 oz, or 1 1/2 c. walnuts, broken into medium-size pieces

1: With a small knife or kitchen sheers, cut off tough stems of figs and discard.  Cut figs into 1/4-inch pieces, then set aside.
2: To prepare a 9 x 9-inch square cake pan; tear off a piece (about 12-inches) of parchment paper and placing it inside the pan.  Fold the corners and edges so that the paper stays in place.
3: Preheat oven to 350°F.
4: In a small or medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, salt and arrowroot.
5: In a larger bowl mix together sugar, vanilla and milk.  Slowly incorporate dry ingredients.  Batter should be thick, but very moist.  Use your hands to fold in walnuts and figs.  Be sure to mix everything well, otherwise the bars won’t hold together.  Drop mixture in the prepared baking pan and press it down evenly. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until the top is golden brown.
6: When it has cooled slightly, carefully pull out the entire cake by the parchment paper.  Flip cake over onto a cooling rack and remove paper.  (Don’t let the cake cool fully, or you may end up with paper stuck to the treats.) Flip the cake back over, right-side up, onto a cutting board.  Cut into 4 strips, then cut each strip into 6 bars. Enjoy immediately, or individually wrap or place in an airtight container.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. April 30, 2011 10:41 am

    😀 I Love the second picture. Aaand the strawberry cake cake dish!

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