Caramelised figs, syllabub, pax cakes

by Paula McIntyre

Paula McIntyre’s take on a centuries old traditional Easter recipe


For the caramelised figs:
4 figs
100g caster sugar
25ml water
25ml pomegranate balsamic vinegar
1 tsp vanilla extract
Pinch cinnamon

For the pedro ximénez sherry and orange syllabub:
1 orange, zest and juice
75g caster sugar
75ml pedro ximénez sherry
350ml double cream

For the pax cakes:
125g soft butter
50g caster sugar
100g plain flour
25g ground almonds
60g cornflour
Zest of 1 lemon

Lamb-shaped cutter


Quarter the figs and set aside.

Cook the sugar in a frying pan to an amber caramel. Add the water and cook to a thick syrup. Add the vinegar, vanilla and cinnamon. Gently coat the figs in the caramel and set aside.

Now make the syllabub. Simmer the orange zest, juice and sugar together until the sugar has dissolved. Cool and add the sherry.

Whip the cream to soft peaks and fold in the cold sherry mixture. Spoon into glasses and chill before serving.

For the pax cakes, set the oven to 160C and line a baking tray with parchment paper.

Beat the butter and sugar together, preferably with an electric mixture, until pale and fluffy. Mix in the other ingredients to make a dough. Wrap in cling film and chill for 20 mins.

Roll out to ½ cm thick and cut into rounds. Take a lamb-shaped cutter and make an indent in the middle. Cook for 10 mins or until golden and firm. Cool on the tray for 5 mins before transferring to a wire rack to cool.

To assemble the dish, spoon the syllabub into four glasses, place the figs on top and drizzle over any juices. Place on a plate with the pax cakes on the side.

Recipe: Paula McIntyre