Showing posts with label fig. Show all posts
Showing posts with label fig. Show all posts

Monday, January 25, 2010

Fig Newtons for Grown-ups!

I have to admit, I love Fig Newtons. Love them. But now that I'm celiac (meaning I can't eat gluten or wheat products), Fig Newtons from the package don't love me.

HOWEVER, I figured out how to make a gluten-free Fig Newtons for GROWN-UPS that are so melt-in-your-mouth delicious, they're hard to beat. And I used...get this...cheese! Cottage cheese. Yep, cottage cheese!

Experimenting...isn't it fun? Trying out a new recipe? Trying out a combination of things that just might work...and they do?

Last Saturday, I had a craving for coffee cake. I had the basics in the cupboard...except, I realized I didn't have sour cream. Well, cottage cheese and cream make sour cream...don't they? Sort of. I substituted. [ I've become such a cheese-girl since I started writing A Cheese Shop Mystery series!!]

Then I looked on the door of my refrigerator, saw Dalmatia Fig Spread [found at grocery stores and at], and I thought, how can I incorporate this?

I decided that jam IN THE MIDDLE of the coffee cake
might be great.

I added extra brown sugar. [Note: Brown sugar makes everything better!] AND VOILA.

Fig Newtons for Grown-ups!

[Second note: the cake can be sort of gooey, but licking your fingers is acceptable when eating Fig Newtons.]



2 cups Pamela's Gluten-free baking mix
1 cup white sugar
1 tsp. Gluten-free vanilla
2/3 cup butter, melted
2 eggs, large
1 cup sour cream OR 2/3 cup cottage cheese and 1/3 cup cream (milk)
1/2 cup fig spread
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup white sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 pinch nutmeg
Powdered sugar for the top

Combine Pamela's mix, sugar, eggs, butter, milk, cheese, vanilla. Mix well.
Spread half of batter in an 8 x 8 greased pan.
Put dollops of fig spread on the batter.
Mix remaining sugars and spices. Sprinkle over fig spread.
Cover with remaining batter.

Bake 45-50 minutes.

Let cool for twenty minutes to "set".

Cut in 9 slices. Sprinkle with powdered sugar.

BIG NOTE: This can be made with regular Bisquick and be just as delicious. It just won't be gluten-free!

Have a great week. I hope everyone is enjoying the new year, making goals, and keeping promises ! Love, laugh, believe.


Sunday, August 23, 2009

Antipasto Platter

WE HAVE ANOTHER WINNER and, yet again, I’m not the one who gets to announce. Boo-hoo. Keep taking a peek each day to hear who it is. Yep, it could be you!

Taking a lead from The Barefoot Contessa (SHOUT OUT TO INA),I thought I’d share one of my favorite ways to treat guests to appetizers. An antipasto platter. This even makes a fabulously easy dinner for my husband and myself.

What’s so wonderful is that you don’t have to prepare everything yourself. So many stores have these items all ready to go. Preparing an appetizingly scrumptious antipasto platter is all in the display. Serve with a zesty French bread or your favorite crackers and, voilá!

Hint: Make sure you go to the store with a list.


Basil leaves
Fresh buffalo mozzarella (small bite-sized balls)
Marinated red peppers
Pepper crusted salami
Olives (multi-colored and multi-sized for variety)
Artichoke hearts (from a can, in water)
Asparagus spears (cooked to a crisp tender and cooled)
Baby Tomatoes (I used yellow and red)
Olive Oil
Fresh figs [reserved for last]

Using a big platter, lay out the vegetables, cheese and meats in sections, the meats to the outside. Clump the veggies together, reds next to greens, etc. Drizzle lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with paprika for color. Garnish with basil [which tastes terrific wrapped around the mozzarella and tomatoes.]

Lastly, layer the figs on the top. If figs aren’t in season, try pretty dried fruit like apricots. Either of these, wrapped in prosciutto, are a delicious bite!

For those with an adventurous spirit, you might add spicy pepperoncinis to the mix! They are also known as Tuscan peppers, sweet Italian peppers and gold Greek pepper.

Note: Buffalo mozzarella is made from the milk of domestic water buffalo. Apart from Italy, its birthplace, it is manufactured in many places including Southern California, Vermont, Australia and more!
Enjoy! And remember to "Say Cheese!" You can change the world, one smile at a time. And check out The Cheese Shop Mysteries, coming in 2010!


Also, before you leave us to visit another site, enter to win our weekly Mystery Lovers' Kitchen contest. The prize is a $25 gift certificate to the Williams-Sonoma kitchenware and gourmet food store. Just sign in to this blog and leave a comment or send an "Enter me!" e-mail with your first name and state to We announce the winners right here every Sunday. Best to all!