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Fantastic Fig Recipes

Summer is the best time to try this savory, antioxidant-rich fruit

En español | With more fiber per serving than most other fruit, and more antioxidants than red wine or tea, figs are a smart addition to any healthy diet — especially during August and September, when fresh varieties are widely available, says Karla Stockli, head of the California Fig Advisory Board.

Not sure which to choose?

Black Mission figs have a deep, earthy flavor, like a cabernet; Calimyrna figs are buttery, like chardonnay; and Brown Turkey figs are more robust, like a pinot noir, Stockli says.

Fig salad (KAT TEUTSCH)

Waldorf Fig Salad is full of fresh ingredients, including apples, bell peppers, pecans, and two kinds of figs. — Kat Tuetsch

Waldorf Fig Salad

Courtesy of the California Fig Advisory Board

Serves 6

  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 3/4 cup plain yogurt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon chopped, flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons verjuice
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and white pepper, to taste
  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (4 ounces each), poached and diced
  • 4 stalks celery, ribs removed and sliced
  • 3 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and diced to 1/2 inch
  • 3 red radishes, shredded
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, seeded and diced small
  • 1/4 cup dried California figs, stemmed and diced
  • 1/2 cup fresh California Black Mission figs, stemmed and diced
  • 6 to 12 butter lettuce leaves
  • 1/4 cup candied pecans
  • 1 pomegranate, seeds only (optional)

1. Combine the sour cream, yogurt, mustard, parsley, honey, verjuice, olive oil, salt and pepper in a large mixing bowl; whisk and mix together well. Adjust seasonings to taste.

2. Add the diced chicken, celery, apples, radishes, bell pepper and figs to the mixing bowl and toss to coat well with dressing.

3. To serve, divide and scoop the salad onto 6 salad plates lined with butter lettuce leaves. Garnish with the candied pecans and pomegranate seeds, as desired.

Nutrients per serving: 320 calories, 15g protein, 28g carbohydrates, 3g fiber, 17g fat (7g saturated fat), 55mg cholesterol, 105mg sodium, 482mg potassium

Halibut With Asian Fig and Ginger Sauce

Courtesy of the California Fig Advisory Board

Halibut and figs (KAT TEUTSCH)

Poached shrimp and sliced figs make the perfect garnish for this halibut and ginger sauce recipe. — Kat Teutsch

Serves 4

  • 4 ounces dried California Calimyrna figs, stemmed and quartered
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 white onion, chopped
  • 2 Fresno chilies, stems and seeds removed
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh gingerroot
  • 1-1/2 cups clam juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 halibut fillets (6 to 8 ounces each)
  • 8 jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups hot, cooked long-grain white rice
  • 4 fresh or dried California Calimyrna figs, stemmed and sliced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped chives

1. In a 2-quart saucepan, combine the quartered figs, garlic, onion, chilies, fresh gingerroot and clam juice. Heat to a simmer and cook for about 20 minutes, until the figs are softened. Set aside to cool. Turn into a blender and process until smooth, about 30 seconds. Return to the saucepan and set aside.

2. In a large heavy skillet, heat the olive oil until hot. Gently sauté the halibut on both sides until golden brown. Reduce the heat and continue to cook until just cooked through.

3. In a 2-quart saucepan, combine the shrimp with water and salt. Heat to a boil and drain immediately. Turn into a warm skillet with the halibut and keep warm until ready to serve.

4. To serve, reheat the sauce to a simmer and stir in the cream, sesame oil, lime juice and salt. Divide the rice among 4 plates and layer the halibut on top. Divide and spoon the sauce over and around the fish. Garnish with the poached shrimp, sliced figs and chopped chives. Note: If you wish, you can substitute fat-free half-and-half for the cream.

Nutrients per serving: 563 calories, 54g protein, 54g carbohydrates, 5g fiber, 14g fat (4g saturated fat), 108mg cholesterol, 663mg sodium, 1,563mg potassium

Fig Turnover With Goat Cheese Crema and Port Reduction

Courtesy of Max's Bistro and Bar, Fresno, California

Serves 9

  • 4 cups chopped fresh California figs
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • Zest of small lemon
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 sheet puff pastry
  • 1 cup port wine
  • 3 dried figs, chopped
  • 4 ounces soft goat cheese, crumbled
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons milk

1. In a 2-quart saucepan, simmer the fresh figs with the water, lemon zest and vanilla for about 45 minutes; set filling aside to cool completely.

2. Flatten pastry to make a 12-inch square, and cut nine 4-inch-by-4-inch squares. Spoon 2 tablespoons of the filling into the center of each square. Moisten the edges and fold corner to corner, pinching the edges together to seal.

3. Arrange the turnovers on a baking sheet lined with parchment and bake for 15 minutes at 350°F, until puffed and golden brown.

4. Meanwhile, for the port reduction, combine the wine and dried figs in a small saucepan; heat and simmer gently for 15 minutes. Strain and set aside.

5. To serve, mix together the goat cheese and milk until smooth and creamy. Divide and spoon onto 9 serving plates. Arrange turnovers on top and drizzle with the port reduction.

Nutrients per serving: 300 calories, 5g protein, 33g carbohydrates, 3g fiber, 14g fat (3.5g saturated fat), 5mg cholesterol, 120mg sodium, 256mg potassium

Chocolate-Covered Figs

Courtesy of the California Fig Advisory Board

chocolate dipped figs for dessert (KAT TEUTSCH)

Tired of the same old thing? Swap out those strawberries for some chocolate-dipped figs, a delicious guilt-free dessert. — Kat Teutsch

Serves 4

  • 4 whole fresh California figs with stems
  • Fine sea salt, as needed
  • 1 cup semisweet, milk or white chocolate chips

1. Wash and dry the figs; dust lightly with the salt. Set aside.

2. Place the chocolate chips in a microwavable bowl. Microwave on high for 30 seconds; stir. Microwave for 30 seconds more and stir until the chocolate is completely melted.

3. For each fig, holding it by the stem, dip it in the melted chocolate and set it on a waxed paper–lined tray. Sprinkle with the salt. Let stand until the chocolate is set.

Nutrients per serving: 87 calories, 1g protein, 16g carbohydrates, 2g fiber, 3g fat (2g saturated fat), 0mg cholesterol, 577mg sodium, 155mg potassium

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