Thursday, October 15, 2009

Fresh Figs, part 3

108. Fresh Figs are a delight to cook with! After receiving a lovely container of fresh green and brown figs from a dear friend, I have come to enjoy the complexity and adaptability of this plump little fruit. The fig is compatible with both savory and sweet.

This recipe is a blending of both savory and sweet...leaning towards savory.
It is a Fig and Onion Bruschetta which I found on Epicurious from Bon Appetit magazine January 2009. I used fresh figs so I did not need to reconstitute the fruit and thus eliminated the 1 cup water. Replacing the wine, I used grape juice. In so doing, the taste was sweeter than expected. Note to Self: When using fruit juice, eliminate sugar and adjust the vinegar adding more than the recipe calls for. It was delicious! And yes...the moans of "Yum" at the table were very rewarding!

Fig and Onion BruschettaBon Appétit | January 2009

by Andrew Carmellini

Yield: Makes 8
1/2 cup dried black Mission figs, stemmed, halved
1 cup boiling water
3/4 cup dry red wine (or substitute with grape juice, my addition)
2 tablespoons sugar (eliminate sugar if using fruit juice or add till taste acquired, my addition)
1 small bay leaf
1/8 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar (or white balsamic, my addition)

1 1/2 teaspoons butter
1 1/2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium red onion, halved through core, cut lengthwise into 1/2-inch-thick strips
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon sugar
Coarse kosher salt

1 cup fresh ricotta cheese
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil plus additional for drizzling

1 teaspoon heavy whipping cream (or milk, my addition)
Coarse kosher salt
8 1-inch-thick slices ciabatta bread (about 4 1/2 x 2 inches) (or baguette loaf, my addition)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano
For figs:

Place figs in small bowl. Pour 1 cup boiling water over; let soak 45 minutes. Drain figs; place in small saucepan. Add wine and next 3 ingredients; bring to boil, stirring to dissolve sugar. Reduce heat to medium. Simmer until figs are tender and liquid is syrupy, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes. Add vinegar; cook 1 minute longer. Remove pan from heat; cool.

For onion:

Melt butter with oil in medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion; sauté until beginning to soften and brown, stirring occasionally, about 4 minutes. Reduce heat to low; add vinegar and sugar, then sprinkle with coarse salt and pepper. Stir until vinegar has almost evaporated, about 1 minute. Cool. DO AHEAD: Figs and onion mixture can be made 2 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature.

For ricotta:

Whisk ricotta, 1 tablespoon oil, and cream in medium bowl until fluffy. Season with coarse salt and pepper. Preheat broiler. Drizzle ciabatta with some olive oil and sprinkle with coarse salt and pepper. Broil bread on both sides until toasted. Transfer to serving plate. Spread 2 tablespoons ricotta mixture on each bread slice. Spoon glazed figs with some of syrup over; top with onion mixture. Sprinkle with Parmesan and oregano. Drizzle with oil and serve immediately.

Make sure that you cook the figs till they have a thick consistency. If you don't, this will be a very runny, messy appetizer. Cooling the mixture helps with the thickness as well
The ciabatta bread was delicious, crispy and complimented the topping...but the size of each slice was much to large. I will make this with small baguette slices next time.
The presentation was beautiful!!!
I am sure you could use another fruit as well to substitute if you don't have figs in season or on hand. Plums or apricots would be fantastic!

"In spite of food fads,
fitness programs, and health concerns,
we must never lose sight of a beautifully conceived meal."
~ Julia Childs


Pipany said...

Hello and thank you so much for visiting my blog. I'm off for a look around yours, but want to say how gorgeous this recipe looks x

Mary said...

These look truly luscious. I can't wait to try them. I hope you are having a wonderful day.

ButterYum said...

This post is torturing me... I want to dig in right now!!!!

darnold23 said...

I love figs and can't seem to get enough. I've been threatening to plant my own tree! I would love for you to join me for Crock Pot Wednesday.

Tami said...

Oh my....I so want to come to your house for dinner...Yummm!! =)

Kathleen said...

That looks so good!


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