Friday, September 26, 2014

Fig, ginger and almond bars

Fig, ginger and almond bars / Barrinhas de geleia de figo, gengibre e amêndoa

I usually plan ahead the recipes I want to cook on the weekend so I have time to do the shopping beforehand – I get disappointed when I choose a recipe from a book only to discover, minutes later, that I don’t have all the ingredients at hand.

I made the honey raspberry cake I mentioned the other day because the only fruit I had at home were frozen berries – empty refrigerator is a classic side effect of vacation time. I baked the cake, then decided to watch some TV, flip through my cookbooks and forget about the shortage of fresh food for a while – I wasn’t really in the mood for grocery shopping, and my husband was too tired, poor thing, I really couldn't ask him to go out just because I wanted to bake.

Two or three flipped cookbooks later, I saw a recipe for marmalade and ginger bars topped with almonds, and they looked delicious. As I read the list of ingredients, I realized I had everything in my pantry and fridge – how rare is that? – except the marmalade – ooops –, but I did have some fig preserves left from making the buckwheat thumbprints.

I felt that the fig + ginger combo would be as good as orange + ginger one, so I replaced the marmalade with the fig preserves and added a bit of amaranth flour for nutritional purposes. Fig and ginger are, indeed, delish together, and the bars were a hit: they tasted great and the baking urge was gone in no time.

Fig, ginger and almond bars
slightly adapted from the beautiful and delicious The Baking Collection (The Australian Women's Weekly)

90g unsalted butter, softened
½ cup (100g) granulated sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1 egg
100g all purpose flour
50g amaranth flour
generous ¼ teaspoon baking powder
pinch of salt

1 cup fig preserves
¼ cup finely chopped crystallized ginger

1 egg, beaten lightly with a fork
120g flaked almonds
60g ground almonds
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F. Lightly butter a 20x30cm (8x12in) rectangular pan, line it with foil leaving an overhang in two opposite sides and butter the foil as well.
Base: using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until creamy. Beat in vanilla. Add the egg and beat to combine. Stir in flours, baking powder and salt*. Spread dough into pan.
Filling: combine fig preserves and ginger in small bowl; spread over base.
Topping: combine egg, vanilla, 80g of the flaked almonds and ground almonds in a medium bowl. Spread almond mix over marmalade; sprinkle with remaining almonds.
Bake for about 40 minutes. Cool slice in pan. Cut into slices or squares.

* at this stage, my dough was too soft (maybe from replacing part of the all purpose flour for amaranth flour), so I added 2 tablespoons (20g) all purpose flour to it

Makes 24


Marise said...

Looks great. I would use almond extract - a favorite of mine - instead of the vanilla one. I normally have to add a little extra flour to most recipes, as I am 800 meters above sea-level. Took a while to find this out and had quite a few disappointments with cakes.

CakeSpy said...

Basically ALL of my favorite flavors in one bar!! Love them.

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