8.07.2011

Figs Stuffed with Blue Cheese, Wrapped in Prosciutto

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My coworker (and friend) seems to cook every few weeks. And when she does, everyone at work knows about it. Because she will tell you. Many times. A few weeks ago, she went to the farmer's market. There she met the fig man. She bought his figs, and asked him to recipe suggestions. He suggested figs wrapped in prosciutto, with blue cheese and walnuts on top. She took the figs to her parents and made the recipe, impressing everyone, including herself. It was a cute story, the first several times I heard it. After several days, I couldn't get the figs out of my head, so, I thought I'd give the recipe a try, with a few alterations.

I did not go to the farmer's market for my figs. I probably should have. The Trader Joe's figs were alright, but I could see this recipe really shinning with larger, juicier figs. When I eat figs, I'm always transported to Georgia (the country, not the state). As a kid, I was an extremely picky eater, so I don't have too many fuzzy food memories, yet the memories that I do have, mostly take me back to our summer vacations at the Black Sea. Our family would rent part of this huge house. My grandparents would get to stay in the owner's wing, upstairs, because my grandfather spent almost three months of every year there, and made friends with the family. My brother, the parents and I stayed downstairs, in the guest house, also knows as the spider house. I don't recall the inside at all, but could still picture, in detail, the large house, the very scary, spider-webby back of the house, where I'm pretty sure I developed my extreme fear of anything that crawls and leaps, and the gigantic front yard, filled with fruit trees.

One of the trees, was a huge fig tree. And the figs from it were also huge, and dark and delicious. I recall sitting out in the yard, after an exhausting day at the beach and eating fresh figs and watermelon. Oh summer.

This recipe is also very summery. The figs go well with the blue cheese, but would be equally delicious with goat cheese or brie. And the prosciutto ads a nice, salty flavor and crispy texture. These cook really quickly on the grill, about six minutes, and make for a great first course. The blue cheese mellows out when it's cooked in the fig and the salty prosciutto compliments the sweet fig juices. It all just melts pleasantly in your mouth.
I trimmed my figs and made two slits at the top.
Next, I stuffed the figs with a teaspoon or so of the creamy blue cheese.
Then, I wrapped each fig with a slice of prosciutto.
These were grilled for a couple of minutes per side, totally about six minutes.
I drizzled the grilled figs with balsamic syrup.
And we ate our fancy, warm figs accompanied with a glass of fruity Savignon Blanc. 

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