Fig Cake
Recipe courtesy of Surbhi Sahni
Servings: Makes one 6-inch cake (about 12 servings)
  • 2 cups finely chopped dried Calimyrna figs (about 10 ounces)
  • 1 Tbsp. freshly grated ginger
  • 1/4 cup rum
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (about 1 medium orange)
  • 8 Tbsp. (1 stick) butter , room temperature, plus more for pan
  • 1 cup flour , plus more for pan
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • Pinch salt
  • 1/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 3 eggs , room temperature
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 Tbsp. sour cream
  • Fresh figs , for garnish
  • Creme fraiche , for garnish
  • 5 Tbsp. freshly grated ginger (or enough to yield a scant 2 Tbsp. juice)
  • 2 Tbsp. honey
  • 2 Tbsp. rum
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 Tbsp. rum
  • 1 Tbsp. reserved ginger juice (see glaze instructions)
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
To make cake: In a medium saucepan, combine figs, ginger, rum, and orange juice. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and cook 6 minutes, or until figs are soft and almost all the liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat and set aside to cool completely.

Preheat oven to 300°, positioning rack in lower third of oven. Line bottom of a 6" x 3" cake pan with parchment paper. Grease and flour parchment paper and sides of pan.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt until combined; set aside. In the large bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter and brown sugar on high speed for 2 minutes, or until light and fluffy. Reduce speed to low, add honey and beat until blended. Beat in eggs one at a time; then add vanilla, occasionally scraping mixture down sides of bowl. Add flour mixture and beat until just combined. Using a rubber spatula, fold in fig mixture and sour cream until just combined.

Scrape batter into prepared pan and spread level. Bake 1 hour and 20 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in center comes out clean. Transfer pan to a rack and let cool 10 minutes. Run a thin-bladed knife around edge of cake to loosen; invert onto rack and remove parchment paper. Turn cake upright on rack; let cool completely.

To make glaze: Place grated ginger in a small sieve set over a small dish. Press ginger with the back of a spoon to extract juice; discard solids and reserve juice. In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine 2 teaspoons ginger juice, honey, and rum; bring to a bare simmer, stirring until blended. Remove from heat and immediately brush on top and sides of cake. Cool cake at least 20 more minutes.

To make caramel sauce: In a small bowl, whisk together sour cream, rum, and remaining 1 tablespoon ginger juice; set aside. Place 2 tablespoons water in a medium-size, heavy-bottomed saucepan. Sprinkle sugar evenly on top. Bring to a boil over medium heat; cook about 6 minutes, or until golden brown, occasionally swirling pan to prevent crystals from forming. Remove from heat and slowly add heavy cream, taking care not to spatter; stir until blended. Add sour cream mixture; stir until combined. Serve cake warm or at room temperature, garnished with fresh figs, crème fraîche, and caramel sauce (warm or room temperature).