It is traditional welcoming sweet from island of Vis - HIB. It is purely natural product, full of taste and aroma, hight nutritional value and with such a remarkable history.
Original recipe is dated in pre-Roman period. It was prepared by peasants using only dry figs and natural preservative - fennel. It was further more preserved by dehydration method (sun dried) and for special occasions enhanced with walnuts.
Fig was very popular sweetener in time before sugar was brought to Europe by Arabs in 8th century. That's way so many traditional Mediterranean cakes are made with figs, honey, raisins.
In island of Vis Hib is traditionally served for Christmas together with domestic brandy.
In island Cres Smokvenjak is consumed with bread instead of salami and it was traditional food of islands farmers and shepherds who would carried while working in the fields, olive and wine yards or in pastures. It is usually formed into pyramid-like form. It was ideal food which they could keep for days thanks to it natural preservation, and thanks to its hight nutrition value it gave them strength and energy for their hard work.
dry figs, walnuts, fennel, domestic brandy, sun, rosemary, bay leafs
Originally dry figs were grinded in mortar with pastle but I used electrical processor to grind figs and the walnuts (make it 90:10 ratio).
I toasted the walnuts in advance since they are very oily.
During the grinding add little of fennel now and then so it spreads evenly thru the mixture.
Knead the mixture as a dough, add few drops of domestic brandy to help you form the small "scone".
Leave to dry in the sun for ten days, turning it regularly. Be aware to protect it from flies
After ten days packet it in paper, in box together with herbs: rosemary, bay leafs and fennel to give it more aroma.
You can see step by step photo recipe here.