Fig Hazelnut & Chocolate Cake

This Fig Hazelnut & Chocolate cake is sensational with a cup of coffee and just as good with some whipped cream for a pudding.   It is based on a Nigel Slater recipe and only very slightly tweaked to contain chocolate chips and made so it can be gluten free.  It uses hazelnuts – which you grind in the food processor – for the majority of the “flour” element and so it makes no discernible difference to the texture to use gluten free flour for the remainder.  


Even though it is November in the UK as I write this our fig tree has just yielded 10+ perfectly ripe figs!  Who would have thought it?   If you are a big fig fan you may want to look at the recipe for Fig and Earl Grey Jam that are also on this blog.



Ingredients (serves 8)

  • 250g soft dried figs
  • 3tbsp whisky or cold black tea
  • 250g butter
  • 125g light brown sugar
  • 125g caster sugar
  • 200g hazelnuts
  • 3 eggs
  • 70g self raising flour (gluten free works well)
  • 100g dark chocolate chips


  1. Roughly chop the figs – remember to remove hard stalk – into about 6 pieces each, then put them in a bowl with the whisky/tea and set aside.
  2. Cut the butter into small pieces and beat together with the sugars until light and fluffy. 
  3. Set the oven at 180C/gas mark 4 and line the base of a 20cm cake tin with baking parchment.
  4. Tip the nuts into a dry, shallow pan and toast over a moderate heat until golden, regularly shaking the pan so the nuts colour evenly.
  5. Tip half the nuts into a food processor and process to a fine crumb – the same texture as ground almonds, then set aside. Add the remaining nuts and grind them less, to retain a crunchy,nubbly quality.
  6. Break the eggs into a small bowl and beat them lightly with a fork, then introduce them a little at a time to the creamed butter and sugar, beating thoroughly between each addition. Tip in both lots of hazelnuts, the chocolate chips and the figs and mix lightly.
  7. Add the flour to the creamed mixture, incorporating it thoroughly but lightly, then transfer to the lined cake tin using a rubber spatula. Smooth the top gently so it doesn’t form a peak during cooking.
  8. Bake for about 50 minutes until lightly firm in the centre, covering the top of the tin with foil for the last 10 minutes. Remove from the oven, then leave for 20 minutes to settle before removing from tin and cooling on a wire rack

If you’d like to know more about me and my work as an Aromatherapist please go to

Leave a Reply