Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour, 10 minutes
Yield: About 4 dozen cookies
- 2 1/2 cups flour
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. salt, divided
- 1/2 cup butter
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1 cup walnuts or hazelnuts
- 2 1/2 cups dried figs
- 1 cup dried currants
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/2 cup masala, rum, or bourbon (optional)
- 2 Tbsp. fresh lemon or orange juice
- 1 tsp. fresh lemon or orange zest
- 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon or cardamom
- In a large bowl or food processor, combine flour, sugar, baking powder and 1/4 tsp. salt. Cut in or pulse in the butter until mixture is crumbly. Stir in or pulse in the eggs, vanilla, and milk.
- Knead mixture together, divide into 2 pieces, pat into 1-inch-thick squares, cover with plastic wrap and chill at least 30 minutes and up to overnight.
- Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400°F and prepare filling. In a large frying pan over medium high heat, toast walnuts until fragrant and just starting to brown lightly. Set aside.
- In a food processor, pulse figs and currants until minced. Add walnuts and pulse until minced. Add honey, masala or rum (or 1/4 cup water if not using alcohol), citrus juice, citrus zest, cinnamon or cardamom, and remaining 1/4 tsp. salt.
- On a well-floured surface, roll out a piece of the dough into a 13 x 13-inch square. Use a sharp paring knife to cut into 3 even strips. Put 1/6 of the filling in a ribbon down the center of each strip. Bring the edges of each strip up and over the filling and press shut. Turn each "log" over so the seam in down, pat each strip into a slightly flatter shape.* Cut each log into 2-inch pieces and put the cookies on well greased baking sheets (or line sheet with parchment paper or silicone baking mats).
- Bake until just turning golden brown and set, 10 to 15 minutes. Transfer cookies to rack to let cool. Repeat with remaining piece of dough.
*Alternatively, you can spread the filling onto each piece of dough, roll the dough lengthwise, seal the edge, cut into 1-inch pieces, and place open-side up on the baking sheet.