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fresh fruit tart

fresh fruit tartThis time of year the local farmers’ markets are bursting with fresh produce.  It’s a place I enjoy wandering around seeing what vendors have to offer.  Last weekend I picked up a lovely box of redcurrants.  I haven’t used these for what seems like eternity and it was a fruit my mom used for jellies.  Continue Reading →

Fig Crostini

fig crostini by The Culinary ChaseI’ll admit that up until a few years ago I would never have given fresh figs a second thought. I’ve used dried figs in recipes but never had the courage to try a fresh one. How would I prepare them?  Would they need special handling?  How would they taste? Dried figs are available year-round and let me tell you this, they taste nothing like a fresh one!   A fresh fig can taste like a mix of a peach and a strawberry. Look for figs that have a rich, deep color and are plump, slightly soft, but not mushy. They should have firm stems, no shriveling, and be free of bruises. Smelling figs can also give you clues into their freshness and taste. They should have a mildly sweet fragrance and should not smell sour (may be spoiled). Figs taste better at room temperature so take them out of the fridge 30 minutes before hand.  This fig crostini is super easy to prepare so give it a go…you won’t be disappointed you did.

fresh figs, sliced
baguette, sliced
extra-virgin olive oil
Parmesan, thinly sliced
freshly ground black pepper (optional)
prosciutto slices

black mission figs by The Culinary Chase1) Toast bread slices.
2) Build the crostini by placing prosciutto on top of bread, followed by Parmesan and fig slices. Drizzle with olive oil and top with a scattering of freshly ground black pepper.

fig crostini 2 by The Culinary ChaseThe Culinary Chase’s Note: You can also experiment with Gorgonzola, manchego or goat’s cheese.  Enjoy!