Fig and Pecan Tart

Oh bring us some figgy pudding. Oh bring us some figgy pudding! I'm currently sitting in a cottage in Scotland, where it has snowed pretty heavily and whilst stunningly beautiful to look at the reality is it's freezing cold and I can't seem to get warm no matter how many cups of tea I drink or how many logs I put on the fire. In fact, I have lost feeling in some of my fingers, which isn't helping in the writing of this post. I've resigned myself to feeling this cold until I arrive safely back in the arms of my Husband in our wonderfully cosy flat in glorious Penzance - I have never missed a place so much!

Being away from home at this time of year is hard. When you're surrounded by everything Christmas and want to be  in the company of people you know and love you it can be extremely hard to relish in the happiness you should feel at this special time of year.

And so I turn to food. As ever, it is my comfort, my obsession, my solace and my joy. Food can do that and Christmas is the ultimate time for celebrating life through food. I've bestowed the virtues of figs before in a recent couscous recipe but this time it's time for a sweet treat in the form of a fig tart - a pudding of sorts.

This is just a wee bit festive but a whole lotta delicious and must, must, must be served either with some creamy vegan ice-cream or a generous splash of soya cream - or both if you're feeling particularly naughty!

I am crazy about figs and whilst they are divine on their own, they're even better when tampered with ever so slightly. I haven't used much agave nectar in my cooking but wanted to remedy that with this dish and I was thrilled with the results. No, it's not as sweet as honey but that is a plus to my mind. Obviously, as a vegan I don't consume honey but I can guarantee you the distinct flavour of honey would only interfere with the specialness of the figs.

Christmas is nearing and this takes minutes to make so welcome in the season with this figgy tart x

fig and pecan tart

1 sheet of defrosted puff pastry (I use jus rol)

3 figs

handful pecans

agave nectar

brown sugar

Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees celsius/390 fahrenheit.

Wash and slice the figs. Halve the pastry sheet, lay one half on top of the other and transfer to a baking sheet before topping with the figs and pecans.

Line the pastry with a layer of figs ensuring to leave a gap around the edge to allow the pastry room to puff up. Squeeze over a little agave nectar - a teaspoon or so - and sprinkle over a small amount of brown sugar (again approx a tsp).

Roughly chop the pecans and sprinkle over the figs along with some more brown sugar and agave nectar - it's a matter of preference really but go easy on the agave nectar because you don't want your tart to have a soggy bottom (oo er!).

Bake in the oven for 15-20mins. Keep an eye on it as all ovens are different and it could very well need more/less time.

Serve with vegan ice-cream (I recommend Swedish Glace Vanilla) and/or some soya cream (I like alpro soya).

dessert, veganAine Carlin