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I am not going to assign stars but wanted to share my experience with these cookies. I made mine with shortening and the first time had some problems with the recipe. The dough was rather hard and not terribly pliable. Eventually I turned the dough and filling into a bar cookie and served it warm with a dollop of frozen non fat vanilla yogurt. It was so delicious and flavorful, I had to try again. After checking in with the posting chef, decided that it may have had something to do with the flour and the age of the recipe. (That's why pastry folks use weights not measures.) The second time I added all the ingredients except the flour and then measured that in 1/4 cup at a time alternating between whole wheat and all purpose flour. Eventually, the dough reached a perfect stage of firmness and softness at 1 cup whole wheat and 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of all purpose flour. At that point I had to incorporate the last bit of flour by hand as the ball was to firm for my hand mixer. Chilled the dough was very easy to handle. Firm enough to roll, cut and fold but soft enough to yield a tender cookie. The cookies were perfectly baked at 14 minutes and well worth the effort. I was a little short on figs the second time so half were figs only and the other half a mix of figs and seedles raspberry preserves. The combination was awesome and I'm already contemplating other fruit fillings for the future. Would probably skip that last two tablespoons of flour next time, but will otherwise joyfully make these again. Thanks Derf.
We made this according to the recipe and thought the taste was great. The dough was not quite stiff enough even after using all the flour and chilling for 2 hours but it was workable, just had to generously flour the work surface. I will make a little more filling next time, maybe 50% more to make a fuller cookie. The recipe did not state to, but I put the cooked fig mixture into my blender to puree properly, otherwise it would have been very clumpy. Overall a great recipe.
These are an absolute treat! Got 2 thumbs up from DH and DD said 'NICE' as well! I had converted all the measurements to metrics which I am more comfortable with to be honest and I did not have any problems at all with the dough. Used lemon zest instead of orange zest since I put in lemon juice for the filling. I shall try with some dates the next time. Thank you, Derf, for sharing your wonderful recipe and goes without saying, definitely a keeper!
I was uncertain about this recipe after reading the comments, but I followed it anyway and the bars came out great. They are like a cross between a fig newton and a nutra grain bar.
If you haven't baked with whole wheat flour before, it makes recipes a lot drier than regular flour, and the dough can be a little crumbly. I skimped a little on the flour in the recipe knowing it would be added when I was rolling out the dough. I think this helped it stay together while I was assembling the bars. Instead of rolling out a big sheet and cutting it into strips, I divided the dough and rolled the strips individually. This made it easier to rotate and flip so that it didn't stick to my rolling mat.
I found the amount of fig filling to be just right, but if you want more than just a hint of fig in the middle, perhaps you should increase the filling like another comment suggested.
The only modification I would make to this recipe next time would be to cut the brown sugar. 3/4 of a cup would be plenty.
I onlly use the dough part of this recipe as I had already made some fig filling using fresh figs. I fould the dough a little tricky to work with (seemed a bit dry) but by laying the strip of dough on a strip of parchment paper, I was able to use the paper to help with the folding. Once the cookies were baked, they held together fine. Nice soft cookie. I think next time I will use more whole wheat flour and add a bit more brown sugar (or perhaps some molasses). Overall, I like the recipe - it just needs a bit of tweaking for my taste.