I’m continuing the fig love this season with another great fig recipe. One of my favorite ways to use fresh figs is to make jam with them.
Fig jam is sweet and slightly nutty in flavor, and is usually a favorite addition to cheese platters and the like. The bonus is I can incorporate the jam into my baked goods as well, like I’ve done here with these fig crumble bars.
You can easily use your favorite store-bought fig jam, but if you’ve got an abundance of fresh, ripe figs, then this is the perfect recipe for you.
Every crumble bar recipe begins with a tender pastry base. The pastry crust in these fig crumble bars is something more akin to shortbread than pie crust, and is more prone to crumbling.
The dough fulfills the crust portion of the recipe and the topping. I made the filling by simply warming my fresh figs with sugar in a skillet, cooking the figs until they were thick and completely softened.
If you want to use a store-bought fig jam instead, you’ll still get excellent results.
The pastry crust is mostly baked beforehand, then topped with a thick layer of jam, and finally sprinkled with some of the remaining pastry that was previously reserved for the topping.
What I love about the crumble topping for these fig crumble bars is the inclusion of walnut crumbs. The walnuts add a wonderfully nutty taste to the pastry, and compliment the fig filling incredibly well.
These fig crumble bars would make great picnic treats or hiking snacks, as they’re not only delicious but filling too!
for the pastry
- 1/4 cup walnuts
- 1/8 cup plus 1 tbsp sugar
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp baking powder
- 4 tbsp unsalted butter, chilled and cubed
- 1 egg yolk
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
for the filling
- 1 lb figs, stems removed, roughly chopped
- 2-3 tbsp sugar, depending on whether your figs are really sweet or not
- splash of lemon juice
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 1 lb. loaf pan, or fit with a sheet of parchment paper.
- Place the walnuts and 1 tablespoon of sugar in a small ziplock bag, zip the bag shut, then crush with a rolling pin until you get fine crumbs. Temporarily set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer or food processor, combine the remaining 1/8 cup of sugar, all-purpose flour, brown sugar, salt, and baking powder together. Add the butter and mix until you get pea-size clumps.
- Add in the egg yolk and vanilla extract, and mix just until everything is combined. You won't get a compact dough - this is OK.
- Pat 2/3 of the dough into the prepared loaf pan, creating a smooth, even base. Bake in the oven for approximately 25 to 30 minutes, until the edges are golden and the center is still tender to the touch.
- While the crust is baking, make the fig filling. Heat the chopped figs and sugar in a large, non-reactive skillet. Give the mixture a stir every now and then, and more frequently toward the end of the cooking process. Cook the figs until they're thick and completely softened - about 20 minutes.
- Spread the fig filling over the prepared crust. Take the reserved walnut crumbs and combine them with the remaining pastry dough. Sprinkle the crumble topping over the filling layer.
- Bake the bars for another 25 to 30 minutes, until the crumble is golden. Let the bars rest in the loaf pan until they're completely cool. Use a sharp knife to make 12 bars.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 12 Serving Size: 12 Servings
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 256