Friday, May 15, 2015

Gettin' Figgy With It: Basic Fig Compote

Around this same time last year, I made the fig compote of my dreams—tangy, sweet, and very well-balanced. The only problem? I wasn't really following a recipe, and never bothered to write anything down. OOPS! As a first attempt since then, I thought I'd try a more basic version, with just a few ingredients, and work my way up from there. I certainly have more work to do, but in the meantime I still have a lovely, rich condiment to enjoy!

Preparing to make fig compote with rosemary

Basic Fig Compote

8 oz. dried figs, stems removed and finely diced (I used Mission "figlets")
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, finely chopped
Juice of one orange (about 1/4 cup)
2-3 grinds of pepper

Add all ingredients to a small pan, and pour in enough water to cover the figs. Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook until figs have absorbed the liquid, stirring occasionally. If figs are not soft enough to mash with the back of a spoon at this point, add more water and continue to cook. The whole process should take about 20-30 minutes. Once done, finish mashing with the back of a spoon, let cool completely, then store in an airtight container in the fridge for a week, or freeze for up to three months.

Notes: The consistency of this compote is ultimately up to you—I wanted mine on the softer side, and added water a few times before I considered it "done". You could also substitute a good red wine for some (or all) of the water used here. As with many things, this is best done at least one day in advance to let the flavors develop. Serve this with any meat of your choice, or for making a sweet/savory grilled cheese with your favorite, extra-sharp cheddar.


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