Turkish fig cake with pomegranate syrup

Turkish fig cake with pomegranate syrup

How to Cook Cakes
Peter Cassidy

This cake is absolutely delicious served warm with a spoonful of Greek yoghurt or crème fraîche. The fresh figs, shiny with pomegranate syrup, transform it into a very attractive pudding. You will need a 20cm round loose-based cake tin.


Quantity Ingredient
170g unsalted butter, softened, plus extra to grease
demerara sugar, to sprinkle
4 large, ripe, black figs
140g soft light brown sugar
3 eggs, at room temperature
200g self-raising flour
A pinch salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons ground mixed spice

For the fig purée

Quantity Ingredient
200g soft, dried figs
2 tablespoons date syrup
3 tablespoons water
80ml evaporated milk

For the pomegranate syrup

Quantity Ingredient
3 tablespoons pomegranate molasses
1 tablespoon icing sugar
a little boiling water


  1. Grease the base and sides of the cake tin and sprinkle generously with demerara sugar. Ensure that the tin is evenly coated with the sugar, before lightly tapping out any excess. Cut the fresh figs vertically into quarters, put on a plate, cover with cling film and set aside.
  2. To make the fig purée, cut the dried figs into small pieces and put three quarters into a small saucepan with the date syrup and water. Slowly bring to the boil over a medium heat, then reduce the heat and simmer very gently for about 10 minutes, until soft and very pulpy, and all the liquid has been absorbed; the mixture should be quite thick. Spoon into the small bowl of a food processor and process to a purée, or mash well with the back of a wooden spoon. Add the remaining chopped fresh figs to the purée, stir in the evaporated milk and set aside.
  3. To make the pomegranate syrup, put the pomegranate molasses and icing sugar in a small bowl. Stir in 1 tbsp boiling water from the kettle and, using a teaspoon, mix together until the icing sugar has dissolved, then set aside. Heat the oven to 180°C.
  4. In a medium bowl, beat the butter and soft light brown sugar, using an electric whisk or wooden spoon, until pale and fluffy. Break the eggs into a small bowl and, using a fork, beat lightly to break them up. Add the eggs to the creamed mixture in several additions, beating well between each one; it should take about 5–6 additions to thoroughly incorporate the eggs.
  5. Fold in the fig purée using a large metal spoon or a spatula. Sift the flour into the bowl with the salt, baking powder and mixed spice and fold in carefully, taking care not to beat any of the air out of the mixture.
  6. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and gently level the top with the back of the spoon. Arrange the cut figs in a decorative pattern on top of the cake, lightly pressing them into the mixture.
  7. Bake in the middle of the oven for 50–60 minutes, or until the cake is well risen and golden brown, and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean or with just a few moist crumbs clinging to it.
  8. Remove from the oven and, using a pastry brush, brush about half of the pomegranate syrup over the cake. Leave to cool in the tin for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack and leave until warm or completely cooled. Brush the cake with the remaining syrup shortly before serving.
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