Summer of the Fig


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I live in the South. One thing we do here is grow fig trees. The population could easily be as divided on love of this fruit as it is on fresh tomatoes. One either loves or could care less about them. But they all know how it is valued here among canning fanatics, biscuit lovers, and those of us with wonderful childhood memories of plucking them straight from the tree, peeling off the stem and popping this little package of sweetness right in our mouths.

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The home we live in now has a grand total of three fig trees. And one of those is a Turkey fig. For those of you who have never heard of such a thing, it is a fig on steroids! They are triple the size of a regular fig but have the same juicy goodness. These work well in dishes where you want the fig to maintain some form and integrity. There is not such an abundance on the tree bearing this larger variety; but when I lived in West Texas, I had one just like it that produced like gang busters.

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I have to pick every day and we keep them covered or they will all be picked at by the birds. We feed the birds, so no worries that they will starve.

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Behold the Turkey fig.

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So with all this fruit, I am eating as many as I can without popping and have canned a few to give away and store away.  We all love a good buttermilk biscuit with fig preserves. I have been inspired to find recipes to use them in their natural state and it has been very rewarding.  I have even taken to adding them atop pizza, lending a slight sweetness that is offset by the fresh jalapeno we also added.

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Not to mention how pretty they look nestled among the cheeses.

Then there was the fig pie. OMG.  The final result was a flavor somewhere between apple and peach with a peach texture. I found this recipe online and it was so very simple. You don’t even have to peel the figs, simply remove the stems and slice.

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Ready to bake!

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The end result was amazing.  Mr. Doughboy seemed to approve.

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The filling holds up nicely as well. It was tasty warm and even better chilled.

Here is the recipe if you happen to have lots of figs and want to give it a try.

Fig Pie Recipe

Double crust pie pastry

1 1/3 c sugar

4 Tbsp flour

pinch of salt

4 cups sliced figs

2 Tbsp lemon juice

Butter for dotting

Milk for brushing the top crust

Preheat oven to 375.

I used a deep dish pie pan and still there was bubbling, so I recommend placing a piece of foil in the bottom of your oven to catch spills. Or place the pan on a thin layer of foil, I don’t like to use a cookie sheet as it seems to change the baking process for the bottom crust.

Line the pan with one crust. Combine all ingredients in a bowl except for the butter and milk.  Put filling into unbaked crust then dot with pats of butter. I used about four Tbsp cut in small pieces. Place top crust over filling and seal edges. Cut slits in the top and brush with milk.

I did use a metal collar over the crust after the first 12 minutes to prevent over browning.

Bake for 12 min at 375. Reduce heat, cover the crust and decrease temperature to 350. Continue baking until syrup oozes from the slits. I should have timed it better but it was around 30 min. My nose told me when it was time. :0!

Enjoy!

Guess what was next…….

You know I love scones…so….yep. This morning I had to make this yummy recipe I found on a great blog site called Paper and Salt. It was reblogged there. It was purported to be Agatha Christie’s favorite recipe. I am happy to say it now numbers among mine.

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What made them extra special was the addition of freshly grated orange peel in the dough. It needed nothing else but a cup of hot coffee.

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I got the high sign from The Doctor, so we were good to go. BTW, we still drink only Costa Rica coffee. It is just too good.

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You definitely should try this recipe.

I am adding it here for you.

Fig and Orange Scones

1 large egg

1/2 cup buttermilk

1 Tbsp grated orange zest

2 c all-purpose flour

1/4 c sugar

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp cardamom

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 cold butter, cut into small chunks

1 cup fresh figs, chopped into 1/2 in pieces

Preheat oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

The dough is a bit wet so this is a good step.

In a small bowl, combine egg, buttermilk and orange zest.

In a large bowl, mix flour, sugar, b. powder, b. soda, salt, and cardamom.  Cut in butter with a pastry blender or fingers until it resembles course crumbs.  Add chopped figs and toss lightly.

Add buttermilk mixture and stir just until mixed. Don’t overmix. Knead once or twice on floured surface, then pat into 1/2 in. thick circle.  Cut into 8 slices or into rounds with floured cutter.

Place on lined sheet. I sprinkled mine with coarse sugar.

Bake 13-15 min. until golden. Cool on rack. Ms. Christie enjoyed hers with Devonshire cream, a clotted cream; but mine was fine “as is”.

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Oh, and of course there are my “reserves”.  The canned figs. Happy Summer, whatever you enjoy.

Pura Vida!

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