Using Black Mission Figs

October 21, 2017 10:52 AM

Maria Papa, of Perreca's in Schenectady, shares a variety of preparations utilizing the often-hard-to-get-in-our-area Black Mission Fig.


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Fresh Fig Extravaganza


Black Mission Figs are a specialty produce item available in the Northeast right now.  Availability is spotty, so if you see them … buy them!  You won’t be sorry.


Ripe fresh figs are on the sweet side, and they go remarkably well with contrasting flavors such as salty cheeses and savory salt and spices.


This time of year, we celebrate the fresh fig at MORE Perreca’s Italian Kitchen with these favorite seasonal offerings.



Roasted Fig and Prosciutto Rollatini




1 pint Mission Figs (black)

2 Tbs Olive Oil

2 Tbs sugar

black pepper to taste

1/3 lb. thinly sliced Prosciutto di Parma

6-8 oz either Brie or Camembert Cheese

Honey to drizzle

Kosher salt to taste


De-stem figs and slice in half. Then arrange the fig halves on a non-stick cookie sheet treated with cooking spray. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle on sugar and black pepper.  Roast at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes until figs are caramelized. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.


To assemble the “rollatini,” take a slice of prosciutto and spread it out on a flat, clean surface. Towards one of the ends, place 2-3 roasted fig halves, an ounce or two of cheese, and then roll these ingredients up into the prosciutto. With a sharp knife, cut rollatini in half to expose open side of roasted fig and cheese.  Drizzle with honey and sprinkle with kosher salt to taste.  


Arrange on a decorative serving tray and serve as finger food.




Fig Salad with Goat Cheese and Fresh Mint




1 Pint Fresh Mission Figs

8-10 Cups Mixed Baby Greens

1/4 Cup Fresh Mint

1 Cup Crumbled Goat Cheese

1/2 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1/4 cup Balsamic Vinegar

3 Tbs Honey 

1 Tbs Dijon Mustard

Kosher Salt to taste



Wash baby greens and pat dry with a clean kitchen towel and spread over a serving platter.  De-stem figs and slice in halves.  Arrange the halves over baby greens. Finely chop fresh mint with a knife and sprinkle over greens and figs.  Add crumbled goat cheese to the salad.


For the dressing, add extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, honey and Dijon mustard to a small bowl and whisk together.  This can also be accomplished by adding ingredients to a glass jar and shaking to incorporate ingredients.  


Add dressing on top of salad immediately before serving.  Sprinkle with kosher salt to taste.


Fresh Fig Poppers




1 pint Fresh Mission Figs

1/2 cup Bleu Cheese or Gorgonzola crumples

Prepared Balsamic Glaze for drizzling


This is an easy and flavor-packed appetizer.  Start by de-stemming the fresh figs and slicing each one in half.  Place a crumble of cheese (either Bleu or Gorgonzola according to your tastes or what is already in your refrigerator), and drizzle with balsamic glaze.  Then just literally popped in the mouth and eaten in one bite allowing the flavors to unfold.


n.b. Balsamic glaze is nothing more than a sweetened balsamic vinegar reduction that can either be store bought for about $10 bottle or made at home using the recipe below.


Homemade Balsamic Glaze


1 cup Balsamic Vinegar

1/4 cup Brown Sugar or Honey


Simmer the balsamic vinegar and either brown sugar or honey in a small sauce pan until it is reduced by half.  It should be thickened and stick to the spoon.  Set aside to cool. Store in a glass jar in the refrigerator but best used at room temperature for enhanced taste. Will keep for months.





Joel Landas

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