I can remember the first time I had a fig with eidetic clarity. I was five years old, and my grandfather, SB Owen, had two bushes out by the small barn by the farm house. He pulled one from the bush and cut it open with the Case pocket knife he always carried. I can remember thinking it looked almost like the inside of some animal and had a texture like nothing I’d ever eaten. I think I spit it out! Thankfully, since then, my pallet has become more sophisticated, and I realize “the jewel of the summer” that figs are much like my poppa did. I always think of him when I have a fig or homemade fig preserves which he and my grandmother always had on hand for every breakfast.
Recently, I sampled something similar to this dish in a local restaurant, and I knew I had to recreate this delectable concoction. Fig, prosciutto and goat cheese are some of my favorite things. I often stuff figs with goat cheese and wrap them in prosciutto with a drizzle of honey and pepper, and so making a meal off these favors is marvelous.
4 Ciabatta Bread Loaves
2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 Cup Fig Preserves
8 Pieces Prosciutto Ham
1/2 Cup Goat Cheese
1/2 Cup Arugula
Sea Salt and Pepper To Taste
Slice the ciabatta rolls in half. Paint with olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt, and lightly toast. Spread each toast with fig preserves. Then, pile prosciutto on each toast and add one to two teaspoons of goat cheese crumbles to each. Preheat the broiler and toast each roll until light golden brown and the cheese begins to melt. Remove from the broiler and place a few leaves of arugula on each toast. Serve hot. This can be a meal or an appetizer for cocktails. Enjoy!