because figs are the best

For various reasons, I haven’t baked much in the latter half of this year (not as much compared to last year and earlier this year, anyway). It helps to have people to bake for, and also the time for it.

It was a colleague / work friend’s birthday on Monday, so I thought I’d bake something on Sunday and bring it in to work. I really didn’t feel like trying out a new recipe, so I thought about my tried and trusted recipes, and of course I stopped at fig cake. I don’t think I know anyone who likes dried figs as much as I do, so I kind of think of this as something I bake for myself as much as for anyone else. This is my sort of comfort food (well, I probably have a lot of other “sorts” of comfort food…)

Anyway, I brought the little cakes in to work (I’d baked them in a muffin tray, rather than as one big cake – long story – not really; I’ll explain below), and people really liked them. I had a couple of people asking for the recipe, so I figured I might as well post it here (“for posterity”, as a friend would say).  Continue reading

figs and other food revolutions

I’ve recently developed a liking for dried figs. I remember the first time (or I think it was the first time) that I had figs (not dried), I didn’t really like it because it tasted a bit weird. Since then (not actually that long ago – maybe a year), I haven’t eaten figs out of fear that they would still taste weird.

But my dad bought some dried figs a couple of weeks back, and I think they taste great. Don’t know what was wrong with the figs I was eating last year. Maybe I just like them better when dried (?)

I like eating them on their own, but I reckon the best thing is having dried figs on toast with walnuts and cream cheese and just a drizzle of honey. It is delicious. Seriously.

And there’s another thing that I used to not like so much: walnuts. It’s not that I disliked them or wouldn’t eat them, but they used to always taste a bit off to me. But now I really quite like the flavour of walnuts, especially in the aforementioned combination with figs or in muffins. I probably just needed to combine them with the right sorts of foods.

Thinking of other foods that, in the past, I didn’t like very much but have since come around and developed a superb liking of, I have to mention ginger. When I was a kid, I didn’t like ginger. I didn’t like it in meat or in soup or in any shape, way or form. (Probably because I was a kid and ginger was too strong for my liking.) But now I quite like ginger (in moderation), especially with fish or chicken.

So, I guess the moral of this blog post is that, although it takes some bravery to try strange and unusual foods like bugs and offal and whatnot, it also requires a certain amount of bravery to give foods you don’t like a second (and maybe third and fourth) chance.

Bravery? Stupidity? It’s a very fine line.