LAWRENCE MURPHY: A satisfyingly sweet treat after a chilly autumn walk

Make the most of fresh figs while they're still around with this lovely dessert
Make the most of fresh figs while they're still around with this lovely dessert
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Makes six small tarts

It’s a lovely time of year to walk through some of our ancient woodlands just to see the golden, red and brown colours of the leaves as they fall from the trees.

The dogs get excited, snuffling through piles of leaves looking for squirrels to chase, which always shoot up trees much to their annoyance.

I noticed that the temperature has certainly dropped and that maybe a thicker pear of socks would have kept the chill out of my wellies. Having worn out the terriers with a little help from our furry friends and frozen my toes, I returned home and fancied something sweet to go with a big mug of tea. Luckily I’d prepared a few fig tarts the day before and put one in the oven to warm through.

There are still a few fresh figs around and this tart recipe makes a lovely dessert with cinnamon or vanilla ice cream, and satisfies a sweet tooth after a long walk.


220g plain flour

165g butter

145g sugar

5 eggs

6 figs

130g ground almonds

2 tablespoons sweet sherry


1. Make the pastry by rubbing 150g of plain flour and 75g of butter together until it resembles bread crumbs.

2. Add 25g of sugar and stir before adding one egg.

3. Bring the mixture together to form a dough. Allow to rest in the fridge for 20 minutes before lining six small tart cases.

4. Cook the tart cases blind in a preheated oven (180C/gas 5) for 12 minutes until lightly golden. Remove from the oven and cool.

5. Make the tart mixture by beating 120g sugar and 90g butter together until soft, then add all the other ingredients and beat together.

6. Spoon the mixture into the tart cases. Cut the figs into six and put on top of the mixture.

7. Cook in a preheated oven (160C, gas 4) for 25-30 minutes and serve warm.

Lawrence’s restaurant is Fat Olives, Emsworth. Visit or call 01243 377 914.