Hey I’ve got my thick glasses on and a fig newton in my hand.. lets just add a Jetson’s lunch box and we’re all set for school! I was one of those odd children that loved fig newtons. Although, I think it was for the doughy cookie around the outside of the figgy inside. I would nibble, nibble, nibble and eat a little of the fig and throw the rest out.
Not anymore! Now I love, love, LOVE figs. And cookies.. and dates.. and lemon..
I was almost too intimidated to make these since I’ve never made filled cookies before, but they were incredibly easy. As long as you flour your board and rolling pin generously you’re good to go!
Kyle loved them. I knew he would. He loves anything I make, really (well 98% of everything I make that is). I call him the Garbage Disposal! GB! I wonder if I can get my supervisor to try them.. she claims she doesn’t like figs. But she’s never tried them. Enter Lauren. Hehe!
These cookies were extremely yummy! The lemon really compliments the figs well! The only difference I would make is probably to reduce the sugar to one tablespoon instead of two. NOTE: Oh.. and I’d double the filling recipe, too! I forgot to add this earlier! Let me know if you try them and make any changes!
Homemade Fig Newtons
For the Dough:
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon lemon zest
1 medium egg white
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/4 cup bread flour
1/4 cup almond meal (flour)
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
For the Filling:
1/2 cup dried figs, chopped
1/2 cup dried dates, chopped
~3/4-1 cup water
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
Make the filling first to get it out of the way and allow it to cool. And so you don’t forget to make it the next day when you go to roll out the dough! In a small pot, combine figs, dates, water, sugar and lemon juice and simmer on low heat until the fruit becomes a bit rehydrated and the filling reaches a thicker consistency, about 20-30 minutes. Transfer to a storage container, mash up with a fork while the mixture is still hot, then allow to cool before refrigerating.
Now for the dough!
In a stand mixer, cream butter, sugar and lemon zest for 2-3 minutes. Scrape down the sides and the beater, then cream in egg white and vanilla. Scrape down again, reduce mixer speed to low and add flours and sea salt in two additions, mixing well. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
The next day preheat your oven to 350. Heavily flour your counter and roll out the dough as thick as you’d like (I think I did about 1/4″ thickness or something? They were pretty thin – but if you like doughier fig newtons thicker would probably be better). Using a pizza cutter, create a rectangular shape. Spoon filling down the middle of the dough, spreading it out a bit. Taking one long edge, fold the dough to the center of the filling, followed by the other long edge to create a seam. Lightly close that seam using the heat from your hands (the dough is very pliable once its been rolled out) and loosen the “snake” with your spatula before slicing and trying to transfer.
Slice the dough with your pizza cutter and transfer to a parchment paper lined cookie sheet seam side down. Bake 12-15 minutes (adjusting the time difference a bit if you have thicker dough) until they turn golden brown on the edges. Remove from cookie sheet and allow to cool before storing!