Although dried figs are found year round, few things can compete with the sweetness and chewy texture of fresh figs. Figs are in season in summer. The early part of the summer sees the first harvest of figs grown on branches that sprouted last year. Late in the summer and into the fall, the second (and largest) fig harvest comes from this year’s growth.Being one of the most ancient foods known to man, it’s not surprising to find that the fig features prominently in the cuisine of the middle east where the pomegranate is another staple. This recipe showcases fresh figs by laying them on a bed of arugula and basil tossed in a pomegranate vinaigrette that brings a tangy sweetness that ties the salad together beautifully.
Pomegranate concentrate (also called pomegranate molasses), the key ingredient to the vinaigrette, is a common item in your local Middle Eastern grocery or it can be purchased online.
- 1 shallot, minced
- 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
- 2 tsp pomegranate concentrate
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 1/2 cups arugula
- 3/4 cup basil leaves
- 8 figs
- 3 oz goat cheese, crumbled
- In a non-reactive bowl, add the shallot, mustard, pomegranate concentrate, olive oil, and salt and pepper and which vigorously to combine.
- Toss the arugula and basil in 2/3 of the dressing. Place your dressed leaves onto your serving dish or salad plates.
- Cut the figs into quarters lengthwise. Arrange the figs on top of the leaves.
- Sprinkle the goat cheese over the figs and greens and top with the final 1/3 of the vinaigrette. Serve.