Sunday, 24 October 2010

Fig and Goats Cheese Salad

This recipe is small cruelty on my part, I must admit. Mainly because it is the tail end of the fig season and if you want to make this recipe this year, you'll need to move fast! Figs are one of my mother's favourite fruits, and living close to so many wonderful Turkish supermarkets, I have been able to provide her with a steady stream of perfectly ripe figs, though not before keeping a few for myself. Unlike her, I am not a huge fan of them on their own, but i think they are absolutely delicious in salads.

It may look quite fiddly and like it takes a long time to make, but most of that time is taken up with roasting the onions so don't be put off!

Ingredients (serves 4):
For the salad:
4 figs
1 red onion
2 capricorn goats cheeses
1 tbsp pine nuts
100g rocket
100g spinach

For the dressing:
2½ tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
¼ tsp ground cinnamon
Salt and black pepper

Begin by cutting the onions into wedges, then place in a roasting tin, drizzle with olive oil and a sprinkling of salt and pepper then roast at 200°C for 35 minutes or until the onions are soft and slightly caramelised. While the onions are cooling, grill the pine nuts, taking care not to burn them and slice the goats cheese in half width-ways (see photo) ready to grill.

Mix up the vinaigrette and place a small handful of rocket and spinach on each plate, scatter the pint nuts and onion slices over the leaves, cut the figs into quarters and place on the plate. Grill the goats cheese for 3-5 minutes, until runny and slightly golden on top, spoon the vinaigrette over the salad and then place the goats cheese on top. Serve immediately, it is nicest while the goats cheese is still warm.

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