Fresh Figs with Goat Cheese

Fresh figs, gotta say I have a bit of an obsession with them.  Have had it for most of my life; my dad adored them and we had a fig tree by the house, not that it ever got that many ripe figs on it.  Once he took me to meet the old Italian lady who gave him the fig bush, Mrs. Almada.  She was ancient but friendly and her fig tree was pretty impressive.  I remember buying fresh figs when I was just married in my early 20’s; saw them in the supermarket and had to have a package of six to enjoy, no matter the cost. Dried figs taste okay but fresh figs are amazing.                             fig-bush                                   white_kadota_fig_tree

So, many years ago after buying a house and starting to garden…I planted some fig trees. I have 3-4 different varieties.  Not sure why they are called trees as they are really more of a bush.  Well, here in Pennsylvania that is the case.  When I looked at pictures of fig trees from other places they were actually trees! Here they tend to die to the ground or near it so they never get that big or form a true tree shape.

Anyway, not that many ripe figs on my trees over the years; a few here and there and most falls a couple nearly ripe ones I eat anyway despite their somewhat poor under ripe flavor.   This hot hot summer, my bush branches are mostly full of figs and they are ripening! Wonderful. I picked one or two a couple of weeks ago, then 3 then 5 last weekend and then 7 today.  Eating them out of hand is is really tasty but so many figs ripening…needed another way to enjoy them.  figs-flowers-018

Saw this recipe for figs with goat cheese and honey. http://www.flavourandsavour.com/fresh-figs-goat-cheese-honey/

Simple yet elegant if sticky! Great light appetizer in September.

fresh-figs-with-goat-cheese

Recipe: This is approximate.  Cut each fig across in an x but don’t cut all the way to the bottom.  Put a tsp. of goat cheese; I used some with herbs in it…put that cheese in the center of the cut fig.  Drizzle a tsp. of honey over 5-6 of them.  The recipe said to sprinkle with black pepper or lavender seeds. I skipped that part.  Let me know if you try either.  I did eat one without the honey; not as good, the goat cheese needs that honey to sweeten it to the tastiest bite. An after note: I tried some floral black pepper from Trader Joe’s on them the other night and it was very good; if you have some of that pepper give it a go; yummers!

Recently I found a recipe for a gluten free fig and Greek yogurt cake.  Just need a few more ripe figs and you better believe I will be baking one.

If you don’t have fig bushes, check in the fresh fruit section of your grocery store for fresh figs. Yummy and good for you too. They are full of nutrients and are a great sorce of fiber – important for those of us who are gluten free.  Enjoy!