When I lived in California, my neighbor had a fig tree that constantly left fig bombs in my backyard. It was a nuisance as I was forever picking them out of the grass or else my yard would have turned into fig jam.
At the time, I didn’t even know what a fig was (this was pre-culinary school). If only I knew then what I know now, I would be climbing that tree to pluck and eat those purply perps instead of cursing them. It was my trash but my neighbor’s treasure, at the time.
Now I know better. The high-end grocery stores are full of figs right now and I’ve scooped up a few punnets. Mark and I had a fabulous photo shoot featuring Mission figs and the images are now available on canvas.
BROILED FIGS ON BAGUETTE: There are some easy ways to serve up figs. One doesn’t even require much of a recipe. Just slice them in half from top to bottom. Brush the open faces with high-quality balsamic vinegar and place under the broiler until the vinegar bubbles. Serve on toasted baguette spread with goat cheese. Sprinkle with flaky sea salt.
Below is another easy recipe to showcase the gorgeous fruit. You could serve it as a light starter course or add a few micro greens for a more filling dish.
HALIBUT AND FIG WITH ST. AZUR BLUE CHEESE
AN ORIGINAL TPP RECIPE
4 six-ounce portions of halibut, bones removed
3 tablespoons of St. Azur Blue cheese
¼ cup cream
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 tablespoon red onion (brunoise)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon finely chopped curly parsley
Himalayan Pink Salt
Kilauea Black Salt
Diced St. Azur Blue cheese
Slice each of the four figs into seven slices. Arrange each set into a circle in the center of four plates
In a small saucepan, combine the cheese, cream, garlic, onion, and lemon juice and bring to A simmer. Simmer on low about five minutes until cheese is melted and smooth. Adjust lemon juice to taste. Add freshly ground black pepper if you like. Stir in parsley.
Meanwhile, preheat a cast iron skillet over high heat. Oil both sides of the halibut. Do not season. Just as the pan shimmers with heat, lay the fish presentation side down first. Allow the halibut to sear and form a golden crust before turning, about 2 minutes depending on their thickness. Watch the fish turn opague as it cooks. As the fish turns white 1/3 the way up, it’s time to flip. Use a fish spatula to flip and finish searing on the other side.
PRESENTATION: Lay the fish, presentation side up, in the center of the figs. Sprinkle with pink and black sea salts. Drizzle the plate with dots of the cheese sauce and cubes of cheese.