1.Grease and line a 23cm cake tin. Melt the butter in a saucepan over a low heat. Add the sugar and stir until the mix becomes foamy and pale.
2.Pour into the greased tin and spread evenly. Arrange the fig pieces in the syrup, flesh side down and set aside.
Fig sponge cake
3.Preheat the oven to 180ºC.
4.Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. In another bowl, lightly beat the eggs together with milk. Gradually add eggs to butter and sugar, beating well after each addition.
5.Stir in the LSA, baking powder, salt, vanilla paste and walnuts, then gently fold in flour.
6.Pour the cake mixture over the figs. Place the tin on a tray and bake for 1 hour or until a skewer comes out clean.
7.Remove from the oven and rest on a wire rack for 5 minutes before sliding a warm knife around the edge of the tin. Place serving plate over the tin, then carefully invert to turn out.
8.Serve warm with ice cream.
Let it be said that this fig cake is one of my favourites of all time. My wife makes it each year when the figs are ripe, and it has reached legendary status in our neighbourhood. LSA is a blend of ground linseed, sunflower and almonds and it is a fantastic source of energy in this cake. Figs are among the richest plant sources of calcium and fibre, making this an (almost) guilt-free treat. – Mike Van de Elzen