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Sticky Fig Pudding

Posted by Sue Heward on

Changing up the classic Sticky Date Pudding to use local Riverland produce including our White Smyrna figs, jujubes and lentil flour.
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Autumn Salads- bitter greens, figs, and current favourites

Posted by Sue Heward on

Here is my take on using bitter greens combined with our sun dried figs & quince and sticky quince syrup (perfect addition to any salad dressing among other things).... sensational Autumn salads.
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Figgy chocolate smoothie

Posted by Sue Heward on

I recently bought  'The How Not to Die' cookbook. As an owner of alot of cookbooks I have to say I pretty impressed with its simplicity. I have added a few ingredients to their chocolate banana smoothie to add in some more fibre (figs), collagen (I need all the support for my hair and nails right now) and to help with inflammation (turmeric). I have made this version almost daily in the last week, its filling and delicious.

Figgy Chocolate Smoothie


1 very ripe banana

1/4 cup Black Genoa semi sun dried figs

1 white nectarine or other fruit such as 1/3 cup blueberries (I use what I have in our fridge at the time)

 2 tblspn cacao powder (or unsweetened cocoa powder)

1 tspn of faxseed oil or 1 tblspn of flaxseed/linseeds ground

1 tblspn of almond butter (I use locally made The Almond Farmer)

1 tspn of sweetener ( I use monkfruit or stevia) 

1 handful of kale

1 tspn of fermented turmeric or grated fresh turmeric

1 tspn of collagen (optional)

4 ice-cubes


Combine all ingredients in a high speed blender and 1 cup of water. Blend until thick. You can add more or less water depending on how thick you would like your smoothie.

Makes approx 2 cups of smoothie

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Dark Chocolate, Fig, Pecan and Zucchini Bread

Posted by Sue Heward on

 Full credit to Food 52 for this fantastic recipe. I have rewritten it here with my changes. This is super charged and very lush.


2 cups grated zucchini

1 very ripe banana

1/4 cup Black Genoa sun dried figs

1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour (I use Four Leaf Milling 85% light flour)

1/4 cup cacao powder

3/4 tspn baking soda

1/2 tspn baking powder

1 tspn sea salt

1/2 cup pecans, chopped

1 1/4 cups dark chocolate, chopped

1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted

1/2 cup natural yoghurt

1 large egg

3/4 cup light brown sugar

1 tspn vanilla extract


Preheat an oven to 175° C. Grease and line a loaf pan and set it aside.

Place the grated zucchini on a baking tray lined with a lint-free kitchen towel, then place another kitchen towel on top, patting it down gently to absorb any additional moisture. Set aside.

In a large bowl, use a fork to whisk together the flour, cacao, baking soda, baking powder and sea salt. Stir in the chopped pecans and 1 cup of the dark chocolate.

In a separate large bowl, whisk together the butter and yoghurt or use an electric mixer (this is what I did). Add in the egg, light brown sugar, and vanilla, then whisk the liquid ingredients until smooth and uniform. Gently fold in the zucchini, banana and figs.

Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan, then sprinkle the top of the batter with the remaining 1/4 cup of chopped dark chocolate.

Bake, rotating at least once half way through baking, until a skewer inserted into the bread comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes.

Let cool in the loaf pan for 15 - 20 minutes before inverting out onto a cooling rack to finish cooling completely. When cool store in an air tight container.

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Quince and Pecan Tea Cookies...don't chuck that spare sourdough starter

Posted by Sue Heward on

This COVID time is such a twilight zone where for me baking and gardening has helped ease the uncertainty, find some peace and meaningful moments.

I'm relatively new to sourdough bread baking. Its definitely cheaper than therapy (haha). However if you are like me where I only bake weekly or fortnightly it means I have to build up my starter the day before making the bread. This equals alot of potential discard of the leftover starter. So I've been on the look out for recipes to use this starter, its too good to literally discard.

ENTER the fabulous Sarah Owens and her cookbook Sourdough This book is a cracker. So far I have made the lavosh bread (they are called parchment crackers in the book), coconut tahini bars and now my version of the tea cookies using our sun dried Smryna quince to make quince butter. The idea is similar to Annabelle's quince jam drop that we published a couple of years ago but much lower in sugar and using sourdough discard. So here's my version.

Quince and Pecan Tea Cookies 

Makes approx. 18 cookies (I would suggest a double batch they go quickly)


For Quince butter (note this needs to be made a day before making the cookies if you are making from scratch, alternatively use our sun dried Smyrna quince to make it up quickly). 

500g quinces, cut in half but still with skin and core in. If you don’t have fresh quince you can also use approximately 200g of our sun dried Smyrna quince, the raw sugar and lemon below are then not required.

200g raw sugar

One lemon cut in half

Water to cover the quinces

This quantity will make to much more than is needed. However its easily stored in the fridge and then ready to use next time you need butter for these cookies, our tarts, if you want to add it to a hummingbird cake or served with pork.

For the cookies

170g wholemeal flour (I used Four leaf milling 85% light)

35g raw sugar

1/2 tsp salt flakes 

1 Tbspn chai tea (My favourite is Brewed by Belinda)

1 tsp lemon zest

85g cold unsalted butter

1 large egg, beaten

100g left over sourdough starter 

85g chopped pecans


Quince butter: This needs to be started the day before making the cookies if you are making from scratch. In a large saucepan put the halved quinces and lemon, sugar (and spices if you are adding them) and cover with water. Bring to a boil and then lower the heat to poach the quinces. This needs at least 3 hours until the quinces go a deep red/mauve colour. Allow the quince to cool, preferably overnight and then remove the quinces from the poaching liquid. Reserve the poaching liquid, this can be reduced and used as a sauce on pancakes or roast pork.

Take care to scoop the core of each half of each quince out (this is not pleasant to eat) and discard. Put all the remaining cooked quince in the food processor and blitz until you have a paste/butter consistency. Set aside until the cookie dough is ready. 

Alternatively if you don’t have fresh quince or pressed for time you can use our sun dried quince and soak for 20 minutes in warm water. Then simply blitz this in the food processor until you have a paste/butter consistency. Set aside until the cookie dough is ready. 


Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. In a large bowl (or electric mixer) mix together the flour, sugar, salt, chai tea and lemon zest. Use your hands (or in the mixer) to rub through cubes of the cold butter until the dough looks like crumbs. Next add the beaten egg, then the starter and then the chopped pecans. Mix until the dough starts to come together. Use a spoon to portion out the cookie dough, I ended up using tablespoon for each portion. With each spoonful roll it in your hand then put it on a lined baking tray. I used my finger to put a hole in the top of each cookie. Using a small spoon fill each hole with your quince butter.

Bake for 18-20 mins in the oven or look for the cookies turning golden. Store in an airtight container. 

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