Fresh figs poached in spiced wine. (Photo: Miriam Kresh/Unpacked)

Fresh figs poached in spiced wine

An out-of-the-ordinary dessert to impress your dinner guests.

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Did I say that I get loopy over figs? I’m still not done with them this season. Poached in a wine-based syrup, and perfumed with spices, figs make an unusual, light dessert all by themselves. Usually I serve poached figs with a dollop of cold whipped cream, sweetened mascarpone or honeyed yogurt, but for a lactose-free dessert, sometimes I’ll omit the dairy, placing a light cookie on the side of the plate to dip into the delicious syrup.

Fresh figs poached in spiced wine

Prep5 mins
Cook Time40 mins


  • 2 cups semi-sweet white or light red wine
  • 1 cup sugar
  • Rind of one lemon, without the white pith
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 small bay leaf
  • 1 small stick cinnamon
  • 8 whole, fresh, juicy figs, with stems


  • Put the wine, sugar and spices in a medium-sized pan. Cook it over medium heat for 10 minutes to form a light syrup.
  • Gently place the figs inside the syrup. Turn the heat down and cook the figs, uncovered, for 10 minutes. They will change color as they cook. Turn each fig over to cook evenly.
  • Cook 20 more minutes, turning over once more.
  • Remove from heat, allow to cool, covered, and put in the fridge to chill for at least an hour.
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