Okay in an effort to continue expanding my culinary palate I bought a bunch of figs. I have only had figs a few times. I just never saw them in the local market when I lived in Florida. :-)
Being in Washington State I am under the impression I will have ready access to these for months to come.
Anyone have recipes that are favorites? I would love to learn new ways to have figs other then just in a honey sauce or wrapped in prosciutto. Not that there is anything wrong with that. Grin
Any sweet savor suggestions? I had a meal at a mom & pop Italian place that was chicken with a honey fig sauce. I would love to try making something like that. I went to a few websites and most have very basic recipes with only a couple ingredients and I would love to expand my knowledge of these little buggers over the next few months.
Also would love tips about cooking them. I have heard if they are over done they can lose their flavor. any suggestions?
Thank you in advance for your suggestions,
I have a very prolific fig tree. I combined some recipes and came up with this chutney which I have to admit is terrific. Goes great with cheeses, with meats... all kinds of things. Sweet and spicy:
TOM'S FIG CHUTNEY
(this doubles easily)
- 1/2 stick butter
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 3 small spicy red peppers, stems chopped off
Saute onion and peppers in the butter until softened. It is up to you how many seeds from the peppers you want to have float around. It depends on your desired level of spice.
- 2 cups port (or one cup port/1 cup brandy but make sure to include port)
- 20-25 figs, quartered
- juice of one lemon
- 1/2 cup good quality brown sugar (you might start with less and then taste as you go, depending on how sweet you want it - and how sweet the figs might be)
- cinnamon stick
Let it slow cook, stirring occasionally, for at least a couple of hours. Taste as you go for sweetness and the amount of backend heat you want from the peppers.
Will keep a week or so in the fridge or can with mason jars
Here's my new invention. Cut ripe figs in half, top with sugar (I used coarse turbinado sugar...) and caramelize the sugar with a blow torch or under the broiler. They are great like this! Even better served with small scoops of vanilla ice cream and drizzled with a reduction of pomegranate juice! This was a wicked dessert!
If the figs you have are really good - if they are soft and sweet - be sure to enjoy plenty of them alone too! I know that is obvious...but man, they are so good, I never thought to cook them or put them in anything except for salads. Last week I had a really great salad with spinach, figs, and avocado. I dressed it with olive oil, white balsamic, and pepper.
I see some terms I am not entirely familiar with. "ripe but not bursting" Is this something obvious? Is there a good way to determine ripeness? I would guess "bursting" would be pretty clear.
I purchased both green and purple. Do all recipes work with both types? The person at the market said the green are sweeter than the purple.
I am sure I sound like an idiot to many but I am just not very familiar with these and would really love any info people have learned about them.
"There is an old Spanish proverb: A fig is ripe when it has a hangman's neck (droops), a mourner's eye (oozes honeydew from the eye) and a penitent's robe (skin tears). In practice, a drooping fig is a ripe fig."
So I think small tears are good. I have dad some look exploded on one occasion. It may have been following a very rare summer rain.
Figs are a great way to expand your palate.
There are hundreds of varieties of figs, so the green variety could be any number of varieties. However the most common varieties you'll find are Adriatic, Kadota and Calimyrna. What color is the inside?
I know you have lots of links, but this recent Chow Digest article had some good ideas
More Fig Seduction
Poster of 126 varieties of figs
We're only just starting to get the first of the Turkish figs so it'll beages before I'm bored with them.
We had them as dessert a couple of nights ago. I just cut them in half and put them, cut side up, under the grill for a couple of minutes (to warm through, not cook). We had it with yoghurt which I'd mixed with honey and a few almond slivers. Simple is best with figs, IMO.
Tonight I'm having the last two just with some Palma ham.