Requires: 9-inch round baking pan and hand blender (alternatively use a blender)
Preheat oven to 180°C conventional oven (400° Fahrenheit/Gas 6). Grease a 9-inch round cake pan by lightly buttering the base and sides with butter. Add a heaped tablespoon of 00 flour, then turn and shake the pan to coat the butter in flour on the sides of the baking pan.
Tip: for best results, use an Anodized Aluminum cake pan.
Place the figs and water in a medium-sized saucepan. Bring to the boil over medium heat, then reduce the heat to low and cook for 10 minutes to soften the figs. Remove the saucepan with figs from the heat. Add the bicarbonate of (baking) soda.
Use a hand blender to blend the figs until smooth. Alternatively, use a regular blender or food processor.
Using a stand mixer or hand beater, beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt until stiff peaks form. With the mixer (or hand beater) running, add the egg yolks, one at a time. Add the white and brown sugar, one tablespoon at a time, beating well after each addition.
Beat in the butter, pouring a little at a time until all combined. Add one tablespoon of the Greek yoghurt at a time, continually beating until well combined, then add the vanilla essence.
Use a wooden spoon to stir in the flour, one tablespoon at a time.
Note: 00 is a powder-fine Italian type of flour. It is made from soft wheat varieties and is frequently used in Italian desserts and pastas. 00 flour is available in most supermarkets, Italian food stores and gourmet delicatessens.
Stir in the grated lemon zest, lemon juice and sifted baking powder. Stir in the blended fig mixture and chopped walnuts until well combined.
Pour the cake mixture into the prepared cake pan. Bake for 50 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Allow the cake to cool in the cake pan for 10 minutes, then carefully transfer to a serving plate.
Once the Fig and walnut cake has completely cooled, dust with sifted icing (confectioners’) sugar before serving. Buon appetito!