Eat in Season: Figs

“Oh, bring us a Figgy Pudding, oh, bring us a Figgy Pudding, oh bring us a Figgy Pudding and a cup of good cheer!”… So the song says… but WHAT IN THE WORLD IS A FIGGY PUDDING?! Don’t worry, Captain Create knows now, and has a recipe to share so you’ll know too!

Figs are a tasty snack all on their own. They can be eaten fresh, dried, or cooked into things like jam, cookies, and puddings. Figs are a good source of Vitamin K and the minerals calcium, magnesium, potassium and manganese. In fact, they contain one of the highest sources of plant-based calcium. Figs are also a great source of antioxidants, which can help your immune system fight germs. You can sometimes find them fresh in Utah in the cities, and they are tasty! You can just eat them, or serve them with cheese and honey like they do in Greece. Finding them dried or made into jam is a lot more common in cold states though. Today’s recipe uses dried figs, which have a longer shelf life and might be easier to find in Utah shops.

As Captain Create read up on Figgy Pudding, it became clear that a “pudding” in the United Kingdom is not the same as a pudding in the United States! Interesting that even though we speak the same language, many words have different meanings depending on where you are! As you can see below, the photos on the left are of a European pudding, which is more like a really rich cake filled with spices and fruit. Traditionally they get steamed in a bowl, as in the top center photo. Sometimes steaming can take 5-7 hours to cook! Pudding in the United States is often cooked on a stove top in a pot, and is a creamy, scoopable snack with no fruit or flour in sight! A Figgy Pudding is a European style pudding, which could be a fun new thing to try this holiday season!

Captain Create has a recipe for figgy pudding that is pretty close, but skips the steaming for 7 hours! First you soften diced dried figs in juice, then mix them up into cake batter and bake it all up! If you don’t have dried figs in your local store, any combination of dried fruit will work. Think about any dried fruit you can find or have at home already like raisins, currants, cranberries, cherries, apricots, apples, or even pineapple! We ran out of figs when we made ours, so its a fig/cherry/apple pudding!

We didn’t have a bundt pan, but had a mini loaf pan and a beehive pan, so we baked our puddings into two different shapes. These puddings have a lot of flavor, and we found that sharing them was a must; it was just too much to eat a whole one after dinner!

Be sure to finish up the dishes while your puddings bake, then dance and sing while your puddings cool; there are lots of ways to dance to We Wish You a Merry Christmas, and be sure to sing really loud at the “Figgy Pudding” part!

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