They’re here….! Yes, fresh figs have started to make their appearance in the veggie markets of my neighbourhood and I am in heaven. It’s funny, but for most of my life, I never really paid much attention to these delightful treats, until a very good friend of mine started bringing them, in various forms, to our pot-luck style parties. Well how can you not fall in love with fresh figs stuffed with goat cheese and wrapped in prosciutto, then grilled to perfection? My brain still goes crazy when I think about this recipe! Today however, I am not writing about my friend’s recipe, but one that Ottolenghi published in his amazing cookbook, “Jerusalem”. The first time I made this dish, I was stunned at how beautiful it was visually, and then I was bowled over by the flavours! Ottolenghi knows how to put together flavours and colours, and his recipes make my heart sing! I have modified his recipe slightly.
I am confident that you will love this recipe. The bold flavours of this dish are wonderful along side grilled turkey burgers, but I can see it being served with some barbequed chicken or steak as well.
If you are unfamiliar with balsamic cream, it is a balsamic reduction that can be purchased in most European delis or in the section of the grocery store where one would find the vinegars. Or you can make your own reduction.
Roasted Yams with Fresh Figs and Goat Cheese
4 small yams (2 ¼ pounds)
5 tablespoons olive oil
12 green onions, halved lengthwise and cut into 11/2 inch segments
1 red chile, thinly sliced
6 ripe figs, quartered, lengthwise
5 ounces soft goat cheese
Maldon sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 475°
Wash yams and halve them lengthwise. Cut each piece into long wedges.
Mix yams with 3 tablespoons olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt and some black pepper.
Spread the wedges out, skin side down, on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Bake for about 25 minutes until soft, but not mushy.
Remove from the oven and leave to cool down.
Arrange the yam wedges on a serving platter.
Heat the remaining olive oil in a small skillet over medium heat. Add the green onions and chili and fry for 4 – 5 minutes, stirring often to make sure that the onions don’t burn.
Spoon the oil, onions, and chili over the yams.
Dot the figs among the yams and then drizzle over the balsamic cream. Crumble the goat cheese over top of the whole platter.
Serve at room temperature.