Fall Figgy Greens
Anyone who regularly reads this blog, knows I have a fig tree. And that I almost chopped it to the ground in the spring of year 3, thinking it would not produce ripe figs. Thankfully, I got distracted from that mission. Lo and behold in August/September of year 3, I picked about 150 beautiful ripe figs. In hindsight, I looked on-line and it clearly says that winter-hardy fig trees do not produce eatable figs until year 3-I could have saved myself a lot of aggravation if only I had used my brain (and Google). Yes, I made jam with a lot of them because, of course, most of them ripened in the same week.
However, this year, as in year 2, in the beginning of October I had many, many figs, BUT none were ripe. All were hard green balls. I attributed it to the very wet, cloudy summer we had this year and resigned myself to not having fresh figs this year. WELL, in the half dark of dawn this morning on my dog walk past the tree, I thought I spied a brownish globe. Nah, said I. Figs ripening at the end of October? No way. Yes, way! I picked 7 ripe figs today. And here’s a simple salad to showcase them. If you don’t have fresh figs, use dried that you’ve rehydrated*.
- 2 tsp. honey
- 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
- 1 TBL. sherry vinegar
- 3 TBL. canola oil
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- 3 C. of tender lettuce combination-make sure there are some bitter-ish greens in the mix. Here I am using Baby Romaine, Radicchio and Gem.
- 6 fresh ripe figs
- 3 TBL. pine nuts, toasted
Mix the first 3 ingredients in a bowl and vigorously whisk in the oil.
Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
Wash and tear the greens into bite sized pieces and put in a salad bowl.
Remove the stems from the figs and cut in ½ through the stem end.
Heat a non-stick pan (or very lightly brush the bottom of a pan with canola oil) over medium-high heat and quickly sear the cut side of the fig-about 1 minute-this will enhance the flavor.
Place the seared figs on the greens and sprinkle with the pine nuts.
Dress the salad and gently toss.
*Purchase plump dried figs and cover them 1 inch over the top of the figs in a pan with boiling water. Cover the pan and let them set for 2-4 hours and they will plump up so beautifully that you could almost believe they are fresh.