Antipasto: Ficchi con dui formaggi

We were unbelievably lucky and fortunate to have been in Rome in early September. Not only were the grapes for the wine just ready to be picked, so we could eat them off of the vine on the wine tour, but the figs are in season. Figs are in season for one week during July and for two to three weeks in September, and there we were in those weeks of September! Chef Andrea bought way too many figs for the recipe so that we could all eat them fresh. The skin is so thin that you could take the top off and eat the whole thing, peel and all. Fresh, sweet, and explosive, they were not what I had imagined in fresh figs. Yes…sadly, like many Americans, the best figs I’ve had are caramelized in a dessert or pruned in a snack (like our beloved Fig Newtons). I will be hunting for fresh figs next year!

We stuffed some of the figs with goat cheese and added a little honey to contrast the sour flavor of the cheese. (This was also the freshest, lightest goat cheese I had ever taste it. They get it in the restaurant fresh every morning and it tastes only slightly stronger than Chobani greek yogurt.)

The rest of the figs were stuffed with a gorgonzola/mascarpone mix (to cut the strength of the gorgonzola) with walnuts to add a textural contrast.

Read on for the recipes and photos…

Ingredients (for 4 people)

12 medium figs

1 cup goat cheese (be sure to get a VERY subtle cheese…no stinky French cheese! hehe)

2 tbsp honey (just keep the honey bottle or jar close at hand…you won’t need an exact measure)

1 cup gorgonzola cheese mixed with mascarpone mix (about a 1 to 1 ratio)

Handful of walnuts

Aluminum foil torn into squares about 3″ x 3″

Directions

  • Cut the figs from the top to about 1/3 down the fig. Cut again, perpendicular to the original cut. (According to Chef Andrea, the more mature the fig, the more difficult it will be to cut.)

  • Part the four sections of the fig a little bit and stuff with a small amount of the goat cheese. Top with a touch of honey.
  • OR, Part the four sections of the fig a little bit and stuff with a small amount of the gorgonzola/mascarpone cheese and walnut mixture.

  • Place the stuffed figs in the center of a foil square and wrap it around the fig, leaving the top exposed so that the cheese can brown a bit when baked.
  • Put your wrapped figs in a baking pan. (I need to find me some European baking pans! They’re circular and so much more convenient for making small quantities of things…).

  • Bake in the oven at 350F for 10 minutes (keep an eye on them because this time depends on size) until the cheese has brown slightly.

  • Remove from the foil and serve warm or room temperature!



For wine, Chef Andrea suggests a
Frascati Spumante – it’s a pure Frascati grape Spumante handmade, produced with the Champenoise Method from the Winery Cantina San Marco ed. 2007. Please note that this is not the wine pictured.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

  • Blog Stats

    • 29,731 hits
  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

    Join 131 other followers