Oh Sweet Thing!

Sunday was Halloween.  Monday, I worked from home. In other words, I was in the house all day surrounded by an ever-decreasing supply of the kids' Halloween candy.  I. Could. Not. Stop. Eating. Candy. On Tuesday I quit sweets altogether. I had too. I demonstrated a complete inability to control myself around sweets in any way, shape or form. It was the sugar version of waking up naked in a parking lot, frankly. In fact, yesterday I found not one but two candy wrappers in my jean's pocket. And so I decided to quit cold turkey for two weeks as an exercise in self control.
And really? Candy isn't usually even my thing. I like chocolate, of course, but I've never had a Snickers a day habit or anything like that. I like it, but I can take a piece from the jar at work and move on, usually. I love baked goods, but I'm usually able to eat two or three cookies and rest easy knowing the rest will be there the next day.  But seriously, on Monday? Snickers, Butterfingers, M&Ms, MilkyWays, Bit-o-Honey..... 
Why am I telling YOU all of this?  Today is Day Three.  Day Three Sucks. I want candy.
So in a twist of dramatic irony I'm giving you a recipe I've been meaning to post for months.  This summer our fig tree went crazy and I finally had enough figs to make jams and also try out a few recipes for ice cream.  My favorite of the bunch was Orange Chocolate Fig Frozen Yogurt.  The tartness of the yogurt complemented the sweetness of the figs.  The chocolate covered candy orange peels mirrored that sweet and tart combination.  The whole thing was divine.
And while it's true that the season for figs and ice cream is now behind us for the year, the season for reminiscing about recipes using homemade candied oranges, and chocolate (and ohmygodImissdessertgivemethatcandy) is not.

Fig Frozen Yogurt with Chocolate Covered Orange Pieces*

Candied Orange Slices
Divide orange into four sections, and remove peel from each. Cut into ¼ inch slices, and trim off as much of the white pith as you can.  (but don't stress out.....)
Peel from 1 orange
1TBSP Cardamom Seed
1 TBSP crushed whole cinnamon stick
3-5 star anise seeds
3-5 whole cloves
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
Melted Dark Chocolate

Boil slices of peel for 15 minutes, and rinse in cold water.
Add peel slices to 1 cup water with 1 cup sugar and the whole spices. Bring to boil, and then reduce heat to simmer and simmer for 45 minutes.
Strain and reserve syrup
Place orange peel on parchment and allow to dry overnight.
Dip peel in melted dark chocolate, freeze for 30 minutes and dice.
(This will be added to the frozen mixture during the final 5 minutes in the ice cream maker)

Fig Paste
Place all ingredients in medium saucepan. Bring to boil, reduce to simmer and simmer for 1-2 hours, until you have the texture of a thick, lovely jam.
3 cups chopped figs
The zest and juice from 1 lemon
1 cup sugar
¼ cup reserved syrup form orange peels

Fig Frozen Yogurt
Add all ingredients EXCEPT yogurt and reserved ½ cup fig paste to small saucepan and heat just to simmer. Remove from heat and strain. Let cool. Mix with yogurt and process in ice cream maker. Once the mixture has reached the frozen consistency, add remaining ½ cup fig paste plus the diced orange slices and process for just another minute or two, or alternately fold these ingredients in by hand. Place in freezer safe container and freeze for several hours before serving
1 cup cream
1 cup light brown sugar
1 egg yolk
¼ cup fig paste + ½ cup fig paste
½ cup reserved syrup
Zest from 1 orange
1 TBSP orange flavoring
2 cups full fat Bulgarian yogurt

*I have to admit to being very, very proud of this recipe.  I spent several days conceptualizing it before I made it and I'm so pleased with the flavor combination and how it turned out.  I fantasize about being a pastry chef and this is one of the first dishes I've made that I feel really show some sophistication in the multiple components and how they work together.  That said, it's really inconsistent in many ways with my goal to make this a blog about using fresh ingredients used in a simple way in every day life.  (Although it's very consistent with my passion around using home grown figs!) In any case, I'm not always going to post daily - so this month, we're going to see all kinds of crazy stuff.


  1. oh yay! I've been hoping and waiting for you to post this recipe.

  2. Ohhhh... you had me from cardamom!


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