Brown-Butter Figgy Pudding
The figgy pudding of holiday carols comes alive in this dense cake filled with dried Mission figs and served with a brown-butter hard sauce.
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1 Hour, 30 Minutes
- 1 1/4 cups butter
- 1 pound dried Mission figs, stemmed
- 3 tablespoons brandy
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Powdered sugar
- Brown-butter hard sauce (recipe follows)
- 1. In a 2- to 3-quart pan over medium-high heat, melt butter. Stir often until butter is deep golden brown with darker brown flecks, 5 to 8 minutes (if butter foams up in pan, remove from heat briefly until foaming subsides). Pour butter into a 1-cup glass measure; chill until solid, about 1 1/2 hours.
- 2. Meanwhile, in a bowl, combine figs, brandy, and 1 cup boiling water. Soak until figs have softened, about 30 minutes. Lift 1/2 cup figs from bowl and coarsely chop. Pour remainder, with soaking liquid, into a blender or food processor and whirl until smooth.
- 3. Scoop 1/2 cup solidified brown butter into a large bowl (bring to room temperature if necessary before using; reserve remainder for brown-butter hard sauce). With a mixer at medium speed, beat butter with granulated sugar until well combined. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add puréed figs and beat until smooth.
- 4. Add flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt and beat at low speed until smooth, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Stir in chopped figs.
- 5. Scrape batter into a buttered 11-cup bundt pan; cover tightly with foil and secure with a rubber band. Place pudding in a 12- by 17-inch baking pan and set on bottom rack of a 350° oven. Carefully pour 2 inches boiling water around bundt pan, then cover entire baking pan with foil.
- 6. Bake until pudding feels firm to touch (peel back foil to check) and a wooden skewer inserted in the center comes out clean, about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Let cool 10 minutes, then invert bundt pan over a plate to unmold pudding. Let cool until barely warm, then sprinkle with powdered sugar. Cut into slices and serve with brown-butter hard sauce.
- Per serving with about 2 tablespoons of brown-butter hard sauce: 445 cal., 30% from fat; 6.6 g protein; 15 g fat (8.5 g sat.); 75 g carbo (5.9 g fiber); 363 mg sodium; 113 mg chol.
- Brown-butter hard sauce: In a bowl, with an electric mixer on medium speed, beat reserved solid brown butter from brown-butter figgy pudding (recipe precedes) until smooth. Add 1 cup powdered sugar and beat on low speed until well combined. Add 1 tablespoon brandy and 1 teaspoon vanilla; beat on high speed until light and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes. Spoon into a bowl; serve at room temperature, or cover and chill up to 3 days. Bring to room temperature and beat again to restore texture before serving. Makes about 1 1/4 cups.
- Per tablespoon: 66 cal., 62% from fat; 0 g protein; 4.6 g fat (2.9 g sat.); 6 g carbo (0 g fiber); 47 mg sodium; 12 mg chol.
You can brown the butter and make the hard sauce up to 3 days ahead; cover separately and chill, then bring hard sauce to room temperature before serving. You can make the pudding up to 1 day ahead; cool, cover, and store at room temperature.
Total time does not include chill and cool times.
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