Do you have a moment to discuss the humble fig? To be honest, it is not even really a fruit. It is more of the flower gone off the deep end. However, they are so tasty. They get ripe right about the first of August, so we are blessed with lots of sweet wonderful figs this time of year. For this recipe, I cook my figs until they are soft and then mash them with a potato masher to make them a bit more mixer friendly.
Let’s start with washing the figs just to make sure any outdoor debris is removed. Two cups of mashed fruit usually takes about five or six cups of whole fruit to start with. Of course, mashing is also a great way of freezing figs for later use. Once mashed, you can store them in the proper sized plastic ware for your future uses. Just make sure you label, date, and put the amount on the outside label. For six cups of whole fruit, I use half a cup of water to steam/cook my figs in a small stock pot until they are tender. Once they have cooled, I mash them. Now we can get into making bread.
I mix all of my dry ingredients in a large bowl first.
3.5 cups of all purpose flour
3 cups of sugar
1 teaspoons of salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
.5 teaspoon ground ginger
.5 teaspoon ground cloves
*2 teaspoons of baking soda
Optional depending on the outcome you are looking for. If you want a thicker more bread pudding consistency in the final product, leave out the baking soda. If you want the bread to rise a bit while baking, put in the baking soda.
Once all of this looks fairly mixed, it is time to start adding the wet ingredients.
2 cups of mashed figs
1 cup of vegetable oil
2/3 cup of water
If you use a mixer, be careful to not over mix. Not perfect is good. Stop before it looks like pancake batter.
Once everything is mixed, it is time to 3/4 fill the loaf, mini-loaf, or cupcake pans. I prefer non-stick to greased, but go with what you got.
Baking time will vary depending on the size of your finished bread. With that said, I run my oven at 350 degrees (f) for 30 to 45 minutes. You should be able to insert a toothpick and draw it out cleanly when the bread is done. Once it is done, pull from the oven and let cool.
As for serving, the bread is ready to go as is, however, if you like glazed breads, go for it. If you like frosting or the kids want to decorate, go for it. Just remember to have fun and enjoy.