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(Over) Dried Figs

I stored some dried figs that have been, well, stored too long. They're pretty hard at this point. How can I soften them up enough to be easier to eat? Can I put them in the microwave? If so, what kind of setting?

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  1. Chop, soak in hot liquid, use in banana bread.

    1. I have a great cookbook all about dried figs, Fig Heaven. To "plump" dried figs, it says, sprinkle lightly with water and then warm in the microwave for about a minute. One other option: Simmer figs in wine, water or fruit juice to cover, until absorbed, usually 10-20 minutes. As the figs cool, excess liquid is reabsorbed, making them even moister and juicier.

      1 Reply
      1. re: RogerOliveOil

        Thanks. I'll give the microwave route a try, at some point.

      2. I've had this too. Makes me want to take them to a box grater or something.

        1. You can also put about 1" of water in a pan and boil, turn off heat and place figs into pan and cover! Leave for about 30 min and they will plump up in no time!

          1 Reply
          1. re: valleyfig

            Thanks, valleyfig. I was literally just looking at these bags of dried-out figs the other day. I couldn't bear to toss them and now I'm glad that I didn't!

          2. I braise them in red wine or brandy and then once cooled serve with soft cheese and crackers.

            4 Replies
            1. re: HillJ

              Yum, that sounds delicious! I will have to keep this in mind for when I have some soft cheese sitting around

              1. re: uwsgrazer

                I just ran a bunch of dried dark plums in some warmed malbec tonight and served it with brie and water crackers...along with a dinner salad. Worked out well and used up the wine.

                If you give the combination a try, I hope you'll let us know what you thought.

              2. re: HillJ

                Soak in marsala chop,add along with sliced almond to ricotta. Adding an egg and baking also works.If I rember I add an extract maybe hazelnut,anise ,lemon, vanilla etc