Fig & Anise Bread

fig and anise bread -

The other day my sister was lamenting the fact that Terra breads had closed during the pandemic because she was craving their fig and anise bread. So I said, “Why not bake it yourself?” 

My sister wasn’t really into that idea, so I decided to give it a whirl, and it ended up being quite awesome!

I used my super easy no-knead bread recipe, and added figs and aniseeds to it. It was really delicious, and I only made one modification to my first try – more aniseeds. I thought that one tablespoon would have been more than enough, but it was actually quite a mild flavour. So I upped the amount in the next batch.

After I made the bread, my guy was quite jealous that it was going to my sister, so I ended up cutting off a portion for him – gotta try to please everybody! I have more friends who are fanatics about this bread, so I look forward to making more loaves to share with them.

If you give this recipe a try, please do let me know in the comments if you enjoyed it! The comments let me know if there’s anybody out there who is interested in my recipes.

This bread is lovely with a little bit of butter, cream cheese or goat’s cheese. 

If you have a hard time finding anise seeds, you can buy them in store in Vancouver or online at Gourmet Warehouse.

What you need:

  • 3/4 cup dark rye flour (or whole wheat, or only white flour if that’s what you have)
  • 2 & 1/4 cups white flour
  • 1 & 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon yeast
  • 1 & 1/2 tablespoons whole aniseed
  • 1 cup chopped dried figs
  • 1 & 1/2 cups room temperature water

What you do:

  1. Combine the flours, salt, yeast and aniseeds in a large bowl and mix them together.  Add the water and mix it in with a spoon, adding the figs part way through the mixing. You will end up with a shaggy, sticky dough.
  2. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a lid, and let sit for 12-18 hours in a warm-ish place, and out of direct sunlight. The dough should about double in size and become dotted with bubbles. If your house is a little on the cooler side you will likely need the longer rising time. 
  3. Cut a large piece of parchment paper and place it on a countertop where it can sit undisturbed. Coat the parchment paper with a bit of oil using your hands, then turn the dough out onto the parchment paper. Sprinkle the surface of the dough with flour. Cover the dough loosely with some plastic wrap or a kitchen towel. Let the dough sit for 1-2 hours, until it has doubled in volume.
  4. About 1/2 an hour before you want to put the bread in the oven, set the temperature to 475°F  and place your baking pot on a rack in the lower third of the oven. Let the pot heat up, and when the oven has reached 475°F, remove the pot from the oven. Pick up the dough by gathering together the corners of the parchment paper. Carefully (remember the pot is smoking hot!) place the dough (still on the parchment paper) into the pot. I cut away any really long bits of parchment that are sticking out of the pot.
  5. Put the cover on the pot and bake for 30 minutes while the bread forms its nice thick crust. Remove the lid from the pot and continue to bake for 15-20 minutes more.  The bread should become a deep brown when it is done, and if you tap on it, it should sound hollow.  Remove the pot from the oven, lift the bread out of the pot, remove the parchment paper, and place the loaf on a rack to cool. It needs to cool for about 1/2 an hour before slicing.
  6. Enjoy!
fig and anise dough rising
dough after the first 12-18 hours
fig and anise dough -
dough after second rising
fig and anise loaf -
the loaf, fresh out of the oven


6 thoughts on “Fig & Anise Bread”

  1. Hi Kim and Merry Christmas to you! (Or happy Saturday, if you don’t celebrate the holiday.)

    This is my second year making your recipe. I used to bring a loaf of Terra’s fig anise bread home with me every Christmas. We would toast part of it for Christmas breakfast and use the rest to make bread pudding for dessert that night.

    Finding your recipe was our Christmas miracle last year since I was unable to travel to Vancouver to pick up a loaf. I really appreciate the detailed instructions and pictures.

    This year I added one piece of finely chopped stem ginger and the zest of one orange to one of the loaves. I will always love the original recipe but the additions were nice too. And it is fun to compare the two.

    Thank you again for doing the hard work and for helping me to bring a lovely bit of Vancouver to my family’s holiday table.

    1. Hi Monique! Thank you so much for sharing your story with me!
      I’ve been too busy to post new recipes lately, but when someone tells me they have appreciated a recipe, it inspires me to find the time to add something new to the blog.
      Thanks for sharing your additions of ginger and orange zest – I will do some experimenting once I have a new oven (one of my many excuses for not posting new recipes).

  2. Is the white flour in recipe AP Flour or Bread Flour?
    Also, in the fig anise loaf you made did you use the dark rye flour or the whole wheat? If you tried both, which do you prefer?
    Excited to try this recipe as the fig anise loaf from Terra bakery on Granville Island is my ultimate favorite and I haven’t been able to find anything like it here in Ottawa.

    1. Hi Joanne! I use AP unbleached flour and Rogers dark rye flour. I made it with whole wheat at some point, but prefer the rye. I sometimes add more anise and fig just for fun. I really hope it lives up to the standard of Terra’s bread – it won’t be quite the same, but maybe will do until your next visit to Vancouver.

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