October 13, 2012

Fresh Fig Bruschetta

fresh fig bruschetta

Let’s talk about simplicity. It can be used to describe so many different facets of life and it’s something I strive for in almost each and every one of them. Simplicity in the way I dress, the overall design and aesthetic of my home, my weekly schedule, and even in my morning routine.

glorious figs

Now, I believe it’s fairly obvious that I may not always aspire to conjure up the most simple of dishes (as seen through this, or this and even this), but with the way things have been going lately in my life, I welcome even the simplest of fare with wide, open arms. My schedule simply doesn’t allow for me to spend hours upon hours in the kitchen anymore.

creamy gorgonzola

The beauty of simplicity, however, is that simple does not have to mean boring or mundane. Simplicity can mean classic, clean and uncomplicated, and those are some descriptive words I can really get on board with. Even some of the world’s greatest chefs know that simple dishes possess the power to be beyond delicious- they allow for each ingredient to really sing.

honey sweet sliced figs

I have been longing to show case figs on this blog for quite sometime now, but figs can be tricky. They are available for such a limited amount of time, which meant I had to plan accordingly. Almost in conjecture with the first brisk breeze of the season, early fall brings plump, luscious figs, that are not only a sweet on the tongue but a sight to behold.

caramelizing with a brulee torch

Figs are simply beautiful and this bruschetta is made of simple, quality ingredients, each of which adds a layer of flavor in its most basic form. It’s as easy as assembling a sandwich, but so much more special to savor. Crusty bread spread with creamy, tangy Gorgonzola and sweet fig jam, topped with salty prosciutto, peppery arugula and fresh figs. It’s rustic, elegant and simply scrumptious. Now, if only I could enjoy figs year round.

fig, arugula and prosciutto bruschetta

Fresh Fig Bruschetta
Recipe by Me

This bruschetta is so simple a recipe isn’t really required. In fact, get creative with it and make substitutions if you fee like, as long as you keep the fresh figs. They’re the star of this dish anyways. Caramelizing the figs ever so slightly brings out their honey like sweetness. You can do so by placing them beneath a broiler or, if you prefer to live on the edge, light up a brulée torch and have fun playing with fire. I always do.

1 loaf crusty bread (sour dough, French, Pullman, Italian… take your pick)
extra-virgin olive oil
sea salt
½ cup + 2 tbsp ricotta (I use part-skim to feel less guilty…)
3 tbsp creamy Gorgonzola, at room temperature (don’t use the pre-crumbled kind)
fig jam (I use this kind, It’s available at Whole Foods and Sprouts)
fresh black pepper
8 slices prosciutto
12 fresh figs (they should be plump, but still give slightly), gently rinsed
1 tbsp sugar


1. Slice the bread into ½-inch thick slices. Brush each side with olive oil and sprinkle one side with sea salt. Set aside. In a small bowl, mix together the ricotta and Gorgonzola until smooth and combined. Set this aside as well.

2. Heat a grill to medium heat (you could also use a grill pan over the stove). Grill each slice of bread for a minute or two, or until they are slightly charred with beautiful grill marks. Flip and repeat on the other side.

3. Slice each fig into quarters and briefly admire their beauty. Sprinkle them with the sugar. Now, at this point, you can place the sliced figs on a baking sheet and place beneath the broiler for a couple minutes or bust out a brulée torch and caramelize the sugar on each fig slice.

4. To assemble the bruschetta, spread one side of each piece of toast generously with the fig jam. Top with a nice layer of the ricotta-Gorgonzola mixture and sprinkle with a dusting of fresh cracked black pepper and a fair amount of arugula. Tear each piece of prosciutto into bite size pieces. Distribute evenly among the arugula topped toasts. Finish by placing 6 fig slices on top and drizzling with honey. Bite into a bruschetta and enjoy!

Makes 8 servings

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