Aug 29

Grilled Fig & Goat Cheese Salad






The hot summery days are numbered … haha. Thank goodness. I was getting a tad sick of the heat and the inability to move or do anything coz of the humidity. And don’t even get me started on the mosquitoes! We have (had?) a fly screen but our wonderful buffoon of a dog crashed right through it a few months ago when he went a bit mental, chasing his ball.



Doopey didn’t cope very well in the heat. He could barely even make it out for a 20 minute walk. I had the AC on all the time in the house for his benefit, but on some days even that didn’t seem to work. The problem with having huge wall to wall glass windows is that if you close them the green-house effect takes place indoors. So there were some occasions where it was better to go out and sit under a tree rather than stay home. At least in the park where are shady trees, soft breeze and ponds for Doopey to wade in. He doesn’t swim; if he can’t see the bottom of the pond, then he ain’t going in.



Anyway, I was out on the daily grocery run and I happened to see some fairly nice Figs on sale. Now, I learnt a valuable lesson yesterday as well : Never buy pre-packed figs in those plastic containers sold at supermarkets, especially if you cannot see the bottom. These figs came in a pack of four, but when I got home two of them had already grown mould. Grrrr ….!! Figs rot super quickly after they are picked, and they bruise easily too, so when buying figs you need to be able to check the bottoms of the fruit.



I found this amazing website on French regional cuisine last night, called Easy French Food, and it had a very informative article about figs. it is no secret that I do love French regional cuisine and I try so soak up as much information as I can. Here are a few words of wisdom this site had to offer about figs :


Late summer and early fall is when you will find fresh figs available. A fig is a very delicate fruit that quickly rots after it has been picked. (That is why in general you will find them dried.). Follow these tips for selecting and storing fresh figs:

  • Choose slightly soft, wrinkled fruits, that have a plump feel with no signs of mold.
  • Do not buy hard, smooth figs. The fig does not ripen after it is picked.
  • If you can pick them off the tree yourself, look for a wrinkled, soft fruit with a drop of nectar hanging from it.
  • I wouldn’t bother storing them in the refrigerator. It kills their flavor and they’re not lasting long no matter what you do. Keep them arranged so they are not touching each other. Most importantly, eat them quickly!
  • You can eat all of the fig, except perhaps for a hard point where it hung from the tree. Just be sure to wash before enjoying.





I like figs as they are, but today I decided to get fancy and grill them for my salad, just to bring about a different dimension to the flavours. The caramalized bits would really go well with the sharpness of the goat cheese, I thought. So I washed and cut the figs in half and then I smeared some minted syrup onto each cut surface, and placed them face down onto a dry, hot pan. I had some leftover mint syrup in the fridge, but you can always just use your favourite honey. Alternatively, if you have a blow torch, then you can really go to town with this. Just sprinkle some regular sugar on the surface and torch it like you would a créme brulée. Only takes a few seconds.





I just went with the hot frying pan method. The sugars caramelize really quickly so please to not walk away from the stove while this is going on. There is caramelized … and then there is BURNT. You don’t want the latter. Take them off the heat and set them aside.



I got a pack of mixed greens, washed them in really cold water to refresh them and then dressed them in some light olive oil, a hint of white wine vinegar (just a tiny splash, coz I don’t like tart dressings) and a generous grind of sea salt & pepper. Toss and plate up. Arrange the toasted figs, and crumble the goat cheese on top. You can use Stilton or any of your favourite blue vein if you like, it works just as well along with some toasted walnuts.





To finish off this amazingly simple salad I went with a honey and thyme dressing with some more of the mint syrup just to tie it all together. Sprinkle with some fresh thyme and you’ve got yourself a healthy summer lunch in minutes. I’d strongly suggest you serve this salad accompanied with melba toasts so that you can smear that gorgeous cheese and fig onto it. YUMMAY!! It’s a beautiful dish so I hope you give it a try and don’t be afraid to play with the flavours to suit your taste.



Until next time ….




~ ENJOY!! ~





Permanent link to this article: http://foodflurries.com/savoury/grilled-fig-goat-cheese-salad

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *