15 Black Mission Figs. They actually aren't black but go from green as they ripen to more of a purplish brown. They should be firm but when you press them with your finger they should yield just a bit. 12 figs are for the recipe and 3 are to eat while cooking.
1/4 to 1/2 cup Honey
A pint of Vanilla Ice Cream
1. Slice your figs in half lengthwise, drizzle the cut side of the fig with
the Extra Virgin Olive Oil. DO NOT use a brush to spread the oil on the fig. Do it with your fingers so you can feel the silkiness of the oil against the flesh of the fig...mmmmmmmmm !
This is where your 3 extra figs come in. Eat one half without the oil and 1 half with. Taste the sugars, the oil...and then sprinkle a little kosher salt on another half that also has oil on it. Sit back, open your culinary journal and make notes! :)
2. Heat the grill medium hot, put the fig on flat side down and don't walk away. It could take 2 minutes, 3 or even up 4 minutes to get to the point where you should turn them. It depends on the figs ripeness, your grill and the Provencal culinary gods.
This is where your three extra figs come in again. Remember from Step 1 you've already eaten 3 halves. Since your figs on the grill can go from done to burnt in a matter of seconds these three halves will come in handy. About a minute after they hit the grill pull one off. Even if it hasn't changed in color to be a deep ruby burgundy, you should eat it anyway. Repeat the process 2 more times and then pull the whole batch off. Why do all of this? The figs can burn very fast as the natural sugars in the fig are waiting to explode out into the world from whence they came...and you'll learn a lot about the camelization process.
3. When they look and taste right, flip them over onto the rounded side for a minute.
4. Take them off the grill, put 'em on a plate flat side up, drizzle on some honey and add a scope of vanilla ice cream on the side. Maybe place a strawberry or slice from a luscious peach on the plate. You could sprinkle the slightest amount of thyme or rosemary on if you wish.
5. Eat it all whilst the fig gently releases the cream from it's icy state
Slice your figs in half lengthwise, from the narrow end down
to the wide blossom end. Dry and set aside. Baste the cut side of the
fig with the Extra Virgin Olive Oil. You can salt lightly at this time.
Place the figs, oiled side up, on a plate.
Heat your grill to medium hot.
Using tongs, place figs cut side down on the hot grill. The sugars in
the fig tend to burn so keep a careful eye on them. Turn them one
quarter turn halfway through. Then, briefly turn them onto the rounded
side to warm through. You'll notice that the cut fig will deepen into a
beautiful ruby shade.
This is the first of several episodes from Madrid that will go live over the next week. BEWARE, if you are in any way longing to be in Europe, Spain especially, then I implore you to not watch these videos.
Before a nice lunch plate of various types of cured jamon (ham) and maybe some pork cracklings, followed by a dinner comprised of grazing for various fishy things I felt it necessary to have a nice healthy breakfast. Take a look.