2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp cloves
1 cup vegetable oil
3 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup fig preserves (I used fig jam)
1/2 cup chopped toasted pecans
1. Preheat oven to 350F. Stir together flour and next 5 ingredients in a large bowl. Gradually add oil, beating at medium speed with an electric mixer until blended. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating until blended. Add buttermilk and vanilla, beating until blended. Fold in preserves and pecans.
2. Spoon batter into 2 (12-cup) lightly greased (with cooking spray) muffin pans, filling 20 muffin cups about 3/4 full.
3. Bake at 350F for 15-18 minutes or until a wooden pick comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes. Invert cakes onto wire racks. Cool completely about 45 minutes.
4. Drizzle cakes with Buttermilk glaze. Cool 10 minutes. Pipe vanilla Hard Sauce onto warm cakes, and serve.
Bring 1/2 cup sugar, 1/4 cup buttermilk, 4 Tbsp butter, 2 tsp cornstarch, and 1/4 tsp baking soda to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring often. Immediately remove mixture from heat, and cool 10 minutes. Stir in 1 1/2 tsp vanilla. (Makes about 3/4 cup)
Vanilla Hard Sauce
Split 1 vanilla bean lengthwise, and scrape seeds into a large bowl. Stir in 2 cups
powdered sugar. Beat 1 cup softened butter into sugar mixture at medium speed with an electric mixer until blended. (Makes about 1 1/2 cups)
From one of my favourite baking books- Southern Living's The Southern Cake Book