Giving a Fig
Ways to eat one of NOLA’s most ubiquitous summer delicacies
It’s been a rough week. It’s been rough personally, professionally, politically.
Nothing is really bad – my kids are healthy, although Ruby had a scare at camp when she fell and banged up her cheek; my house is messy but still standing, even if all of the appliances seem to have signed some kind of bizarre electronic suicide pact; my dad’s health seems to be improving, even though he remains steadfast in his belief that the entire health care industry is a vast conspiracy – but it’s just been hectic and stressful, and Westboro Baptist Church has been in town being its own special brand of disgusting, and it’s so hot I get sweaty just walking from my house to my car at 8 a.m., and sometimes you just need to sit and chill and eat some figs.
Luckily, we have a fig tree in our backyard that is loving its job, and we have a ridiculous amount of figgy goodness.
Here are some of my favorite things to do with the summer bounty:
- Figs, broiled and topped with goat cheese and prosciutto: This is simple and delicious, a classic combination for a reason
- Caramelized figs used as an ice cream topping
- This perfect summer salad of radicchio, white beans, figs, and walnuts
- FROG jam, which is figs, raspberries, oranges, and ginger
- With all apologies to Tim McNally for venturing into cocktail territory, this fig-infused cocktail has all of my favorite flavors (I use fresh fig puree and Maker’s Mark instead of Four Roses) (I’ve also subbed ginger ale for the cream soda; it’s equally delightful!).
- Fig clafouti, the most forgiving summer dessert imaginable
- Fig salsa, which is just figs, lime juice, red onion, jalapeno (if you like heat), cilantro (if it doesn’t taste like soap to you), olive oil, and salt – it’s great eaten with tortilla chips or served over grilled chicken or fish
- Just plain figs, eaten cold out of the fridge
The kids won’t touch the figs – “they’re squishy” “the seeds are weird!” – but that’s OK.
More figs for the rest of us to eat while we watch the world burn!
What’s your favorite way to use up this crazy-abundant summer fruit?