Fig + Goat Cheese Bruschetta
“Cooking is like love. It should be entered into with abandon or not at all.” ~ Harriet Van Horne
Figs are beautiful little jewels, also considered a forbidden fruit, which indicates what an indulgent, pleasure enhancing young fruit this is. The Bible notes that Adam and Eve made their leaf clothing from fig leaves (Source: Wikipedia). The symbolism of figs are suggestive of knowledge, fertility, indulgence and last but not least, it’s versatility.
Figs can be used to make a fancy snack or hors d’oeuvres – the options are endless. For today’s tea party, I am using dried figs – this means you can make this at any time of the year.
This bruschetta consists of fig paste, goat cheese, multigrain bread, and a few spring onions for colour. This is the perfect mini appetizer for a dinner party or like in my case, a tea party.
Why I like this more for an afternoon tea party is that, it’s healthy, the sweetness of the fig goes well with English tea, and is filling enough for a 4PM snack. And most importantly, it looks real fancy!
Whenever I have my parents come over, I am nervous wreck – they have high standards and even higher expectations from me – the house must be spic and span, the crockery pretty, food exceptional and they are my hardest critics. My mum is a fantastic cook, so trying to impress is no easy feat.
To further my agony, my father was fasting. How cruel is it to serve fancy food to a man who lives to eat?
But this fig paste can be had while fasting – as it is made up of dried figs, some orange and a pinch of salt. I cut thin strip of apple, spread a bit of the paste, and a piece of pistachio – and it’s ready. Mind you, the apple part is tricky – I rolled a few strips up with the paste and fastened with a toothpick, but failed miserably after three strips. So then I cut slightly thicker strips and served them as open sandwiches on apple.
This fig paste can be used in sandwiches with a salty cheese, a slice of apple and onions. An Indian version of fig paste with cardamom and saffron can be used to stuff puris and deep fried in rich ghee.
Food Fact: Fresh figs are best eaten whole (with skin) when fully ripened – this is when it reaches its’ optimum anti-oxidants level.
- 4 multigrain sliced bread
- 2 spring onions, chopped
- 3 tbsp goat cheese
- 10 dried figs
- Juice from one orange
- 1 tsp orange zest
- Pinch of salt
- ½ cup water
- ½ apple
- 6-8 pistachios
- Wash the figs properly and boil with the water, orange juice, orange zest and salt. Allow the figs to boil for almost 30 mins, until the figs have nicely softened and are easily cut through by a wooden spatula.
- Place the figs, with a few spoons of the liquid into a mixer and crush into a loose paste.
- Toast the bread slices and cut into 4 squares.
- Spread a dollop of the fig paste.
- Place a small piece of goat cheese on top and sprinkle a few green onions on top.
- Thinly slice an apple with a potato peeler into thin strips that can be easily rolled.
- Spread some of the fig paste on it and gently roll and fasten with a toothpick.
- Keep the apple slices slightly thicker and spread the fig paste on one side. Place on pistachio on top.