This pudding dish was a palace staple, very easy on the chef but utterly delicious – especially made with soft dried figs available particularly to sultans.
pinch of salt
cream or yoghurt
With the stem uppermost, cut each fig horizontally almost in half, without actually severing them.
Soak the figs in warm water for 30 minutes. Save the water.
Break the walnut halves into pieces, not too small, and stuff some into the middle of each fig. Close the figs and stand them side by side in a shallow saucepan.
Stir the sugar into the warm figgy water and pour it over the figs, with the cinnamon sticks and a small pinch of salt. Set on a high heat and bring the liquid to the boil, then lower the heat and simmer the figs gently for 20 minutes or so, covered, until the liquid is syrupy. Let them cool.
Serve the figs at room temperature, with the syrup drizzled on top and a sprinkling of chopped walnuts.