[VIDEO]: Gettin' figgy with it

Ah, late summer, when produce is a-plenty, and it seems there are new varieties of fruits and vegetables popping up each week. For me, the best thing about this season is trying new things and experimenting! Which brings me to the incredible fig.

Okay, I know what you're saying, figs aren't new, they've been around forever! But believe it or not, up until this summer, my exposure to figs was limited to the dry variety, think trail mixes, granolas, energy bars. I never liked the texture or flavor, so I never bought them for myself. A few weeks ago I saw them in my local food co-op, and witnessed shoppers grabbing pints by the armful. The local figs literally couldn't stay on the shelves. Right then and there, I knew something was going on, and I wanted to know what the fuss was about.

So I tried them, and I'll skip to the end: THEY WERE OUT OF THIS WORLD GOOD. 

Turns out, they're pretty good for us, too, with loads of fiber and potassium. So watch this week's episode of Michelle's Monday Minute below, and snag the recipe for caramelized figs with a honey-balsamic sauce, served a la mode, because every warm dessert is better with ice cream. Enjoy, my summer-loving friends!

Caramelized Figs & Honey-Balsamic Sauce
Servings: 4

Ingredients:
8 ripe black mission figs, sliced in half lengthwise
1 tsp. grass fed butter
1/4 c. balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp. honey
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 pint vanilla ice cream (optional)

Directions:

  1.  Melt butter in a cast iron or heavy-bottom skillet over medium-high heat.
  2. Place figs cut side down and cook until caramelized, about 1-2 minutes, then plate figs onto a platter or individual plates and set aside. 
  3. Whisk together balsamic vinegar, honey, and vanilla in a small bowl, and add mixture to the same skillet over medium heat. Simmer until reduced to about 2-3 tbsp, about 10-15 minutes.
  4. Drizzle over figs. Serve with vanilla ice cream (sauce will harden when touching the ice cream, which creates a very yummy shell topping!). 

Notes

  • When purchasing figs, you want them firm, with no marks on the skin.
  • They ripen in about 1-2 days, and don't last more than 3 days in the fridge.