Autumn and its warm colored nature is rolling in, my wood for the fireplace is already stacked up in my backyard. Grape harvest has started and soon we will taste some young wines. Beautiful color arrangements are beautifying our homes and my desire for earthy food is growing. This time of the year I have a lot of figs in my kitchen, fresh and dried, they are part of my Mediterranean diet.
Figs are in the family of mulberries and have numerous health properties, one of which is to protect the heart. Figs lower blood pressure, are high in potassium, low on sodium, contain Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids and the antioxidant polyphenol prevents atherosclerosis. Do we need any more reasons for eating figs any time we feel like it?
The memory of picking up figs during my childhood with the adults, my father, uncles and some of their friends is grand. We sat with the baskets full of figs under a tree and ate them with pecorino cheese and bread. The combination of sweet figs and salty cheese is perfect and the colors are so fantastic: deep purple on the outside and red purple on the inside. The combination with white of the cheese, the purple of the figs and the green of pistachios nuts is simple magic happening in the mouth while the taste buds dance happy.
Have you ever tried baked figs stuffed with nuts or gorgonzola cheese? It takes 5 minutes of preparation and 5-8 minutes of baking. Simply cut the figs in half and place one nut (any of your liking) or a dollop of cheese in the middle. Close each fig like a sandwich, place them on a baking sheet and in the oven at 275° F., bake just enough to melt the cheese or warm up the nuts. Cool before eating.
Find this recipe on page 101 of my book ©Sins of a Queen – Italian Appetizers and Desserts.
Pair a Chianti wine if you are combining figs and pecorino, or fig with prosciutto/salami, otherwise, if you are having figs and nuts, a good bubbly Prosecco will be perfect as well. Ciao,
Copyright © 2014 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved
Robert Taitano, a friend and business associate of http://www.wine-fi.com says: “Valentina – an International Professional Interior Designer is now giving you an opportunity to redesign your palate”. She is the author of two Italian regional cookbooks and one book on Colors, all three available on