I made this cake on the fly as a thank-you present for lots of people. It needed to be rich and square so that everyone could take a small piece which would satisfy them and not spoil the shape of the cake. I think it would make a lovely low-key Christmas cake for those who are not big on the traditional version.
Fig Upside-Down Cake
You Will Need: 20cm square cake tin, scissors and greaseproof paper, scales, large bowl, small bowl, teaspoon, kettle, chopping board and knife, sieve, wooden spoon, dinner knife, lemon zester or grater, rolling pin, cooling rack, serving dish.
4 ripe figs
8oz soft butter
6 1/2 oz caster sugar
12 fresh dates
2 large handfuls of sultanas
2 Lady Grey teabags
zest one orange
8oz self-raising flour
100g golden marzipan
1) Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C. Grease the bottom of your tin. Cut two long slices of greaseproof paper, and cross them in the bottom of the tin.
2) Cut the stalks off your figs. Slice them into 3mm slices. Use to line the bottom of your tin in a symmetrical pattern. Scatter hazelnuts into the gaps between the fig slices.
3) Chop the dates, removing the stones. Put them in a bowl with the sultanas and teabags; add just enough boiling water to cover them. Allow to steep.
4) Cream the butter, honey and sugar in the large bowl. Add one egg at a time, beating in well, followed by some of the flour, then the next egg. Beat to a smooth mixture. Zest the orange and stir in the zest.
5) Drain the fruits in the sieve and add the dry fruits to the mixture. Mix gently. Spoon half of this mixture into the tin, being careful not to spoil the fig pattern.
6) Roll out the block of marzipan into a square, about 2mm thick and smaller than your tin. Place on top of the mix in the tin, then pour the rest of the mix on top. Level the mixture.
7) Bake for about 40+ minutes, if necessary with a tinfoil hat on to prevent browning.
8) Cool for a long time in the tin before turning out, first to the cooling rack and then sliding onto the final plate.