This creation is a tribute to an appetizer I had in Spain last year, as well as a salute to a fruit with an unfortunate reputation. Figs are a well-kept secret, and if people could just try one fresh, they'd be hooked. No longer just for the digestively-challenged! I grew up in a house with several fig trees, and at harvest time (in August), my family and I would gnosh on the figs raw or in a Chinese watercress soup sweetened with figs.
Fresh figs are always readily available here in Mexico (and for an unbelievable good price), so I decided to do a spin on the dreamy dish I had in Madrid. It was made with a pairing of fig and serrano ham for a perfect blend of sweet and salty, but this one I tried with more local ingredients. The main cast of characters were drunken figs (in a red wine reduction), caramelized red onions, and panela cheese. I'm being lazy and don't feel like writing down the recipe I adapted it from, primarily because the figs, onions, cheese, and bread all require separate preparations and would make for an excessively long post. Oh, that brushetta! So, if you'd like the recipe, shoot me a comment. The prep time is fast, it's easy to make, AND you will have everyone thinking you're a closet gourmet chef.
The family fig harvest of '07
Fig Art from "The Family Collection"