Anything on a menu with ‘fig’ in it will be delicious!
I have always loved figs – there isn’t too much of them, they aren’t too sweet or too sour, and I love the consistency with all the little seeds. I’ve never known anything about them, however, including the fact that they are at their best and freshest in the fall. Apparently, their leaves are also useful, at least Adam and Eve thought so.
Figs are associated with Mediterranean and Middle eastern cuisines and have been cultivated in those areas for thousands of years. In the U.S. figs are grown in California, Texas, Utah, Oregon, Washington and California.
I’m always delighted when I actually like the taste of something good for me. Usually my preferred food choices are terrible. Figs contain the minerals potassium (80% higher than bananas), magnesium, zinc, copper and iron, and vitamins A, C, K & B. They have as much as 1,000 times more calcium than other common fruits and when compared by weight they have more calcium than skim milk. They are a good source of iron and they are rich in fiber. When figs are dried they are a good concentrated source of antioxidants. Ninety percent of the world’s fig crop is sold as dried fruit. They are very easy to digest and have 20-40 calories per fig.
How choose fig:
Figs should be soft to the touch, plump, have no bruises or broken skin. They should be picked ripe as they do not continue to ripen once they are off the tree. Figs should be eaten within three days of purchase. Ripe fresh figs should be refrigerated.
Types of figs:
Black Mission – They have a dark purple black outer skin and are very sweet.
Adriatic – From Italy, have a pale-green, sometimes striped exterior. They taste fresh and sweet.
Kadota – have a green skin and purple flesh.
Brown Turkey – have a dark purplish skin with dark pink flesh.
Serving and using figs:
Figs are delicious eaten alone but are also delicious cooked. They are wonderful drizzled with maple syrup and butter or honey and vanilla and then broiled or roasted. Click here for recipe.
Try making fig jam. Click here for a Food and Wine recipe.
Figs are good chopped in salads, paired with aged or sharp cheese, dipped in chocolate, stuffed with goat cheese and wrapped in prosciutto. They can be added to oatmeal and granola.
Figs are a tasty part of the Mediterranean diet. Here is more about information about this healthy eating plan;