Grilled Figs with Prosciutto and Toasted Almond Topping
For grilling, select figs that are still firm. If the figs are ripe, the texture will be too soft. Serve figs with a fruity Sauvignon Blanc.
8 small figs, not too ripe (Black Mission figs are best)
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons flavorless oil (grapeseed or safflower)
About 3 tablespoons Toasted Almond Topping (see recipe below)
16 thin slices prosciutto
Preheat your grill or broiler.
1. Cut the figs in half lengthwise. Place them in a medium bowl and toss them with two teaspoons of oil, to coat. Use the rest of the oil to coat the grill grates. Turn the grill heat down to medium-high, and place the figs on the grill cut side down.
2. Cook until there are grill marks and the figs are heated through. This will take about 3-5 minutes, depending on the ripeness of the figs. As you remove the figs from the grill, top each one with a teaspoon of almond topping.
3. Coil 4 slices of prosciutto on each serving plate to make a nest for the fig halves. Serve with bread and a non-oaky Chardonnay.
Toasted Almond Topping for Grilled Fruit
Once you've tried this topping you will find lots of other from grilled fish to salad to sprinkle it on.
Makes about 1/2 cup
2 slices day-old French bread, sliced about ½ inch thick
1 1/2 tablespoons almonds blanched and toasted*
1/2 teaspoon orange zest (use a zester, not a grater)
1 small garlic clove
6 fresh mint leaves
1. Remove the bottom crust from the bread and turn on a blender with the lid on. Carefully open the lid and add the bread in pieces to make large flakey crumbs. Sauté the bread crumbs in an 8” skillet with about 1/8 to ¼- inch of olive oil, and salt over medium heat. Sauté about one minute until the bread is golden brown. Drain on a paper towel.
2. Coarsely chop the almonds.
3. Finely chop the orange zest together with the garlic and mint; then in a small bowl combine with the bread crumbs and almonds. Taste and see if you need a pinch more of salt.
*To toast the almonds, pre-heat the oven to 350°F. Cook the almonds on a small baking sheet for about 3- 5 minutes to lightly toast.
Adapted from The Zuni Café Cookbook, Judy Rodgers, 2002 www.CookingWithJulie.com
©Julie Logue-Riordan, 2009
Copyright © Julie Logue Riordan, Cooking with Julie