Fun Figs with Goat Cheese, Pistachios and Agave

Posted on: Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Like Kara, I too am ready to dive full force into Fall. I see Fall as the season of cozy gatherings and dinner parties - a time to take full advantage of fresh, local ingredients. This past weekend, I visited family and friends in New York and spent the majority of Saturday in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Strolling through the neighborhood, we hit up some vintage shops, popped into Nita Nita’s outdoor patio for a couple brews and fun small plates, and ended the afternoon on the Wythe Hotel’s rooftop terrace. Atop the charming restored waterfront factory, we took in the crisp breeze among an eclectic mix of locals and out-of-towners and easily convinced ourselves to stay until the sunset cascaded across the Manhattan skyline.
While sipping Moscow Mules, we nibbled on a colorful plate of fresh peaches with goat cheese, cashews and sourdough toast. I loved the spastic presentation and celebration of local fare.
I was inspired to do the same at home with fresh figs, one of my absolute favorite fall fruits. Figs are so versatile in salads, desserts, entrees, appetizers, you name it. I sliced the deep purple gems and topped them with tangy goat cheese, salty pistachios, a sprinkle of orange zest, a drizzle of agave syrup, salt and freshly cracked pepper. I fanned the unique, late-afternoon bites on a platter for all to delve into and enjoy.

Mission Figs with Goat Cheese, Pistachios and Agave

8 fresh black figs, halved
2 T balsamic vinegar
1/4 c pistachios, toasted and finely chopped
1/2 t orange zest
1 T fresh mint, finely chopped
1/4 c goat cheese
salt and pepper throughout
agave syrup, to drizzle

Pour the balsamic vinegar in a shallow bowl and lightly dip the figs in one by one. In another small bowl, toss together the pistachios, orange zest, mint, pinch of salt and pepper. Arrange the lightly coated figs face side up on a platter. Sprinkle about 1/2 teaspoon of goat cheese into the center of each fig followed by a light sprinkle of the combined pistachios, orange zest, mint, salt and pepper. Drizzle with agave syrup and serve. Makes 16.

This quick appetizer or snack could also be instantly transformed into a salad. Just toss some baby mixed greens with EVOO, lemon juice, salt and pepper, and arrange on a flat platter below the fancy figs. 


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