Ok so I just had a few California figs and uhm my mouth is salivating!
The memories begun to flood back of summer desserts after long beach days of brandied figs served with homemade vanilla bean ice cream. You know the kind I am referring to? With real vanilla beans in it not coloring and a spec here and there. Our parents would bring it out and someone would light it on fire, everyone would cheer and clap, as if it hadn't been done for numerous nights before.
Ah figs you devil you.
Flash forward 20+ years to a drive along the Dalmation coast of Croatia. A quick roadside stop produced fresh figs and 30year aged Prosec, with a notion it would travel back as a gift. Needless to say the Prosec was so complimentary to those deep purple fresh seedy devilish figs...it was gone by morning.
Now here I am in Panama eating the very same figs I was raised on, albeit dried and suffering from fig nostalgia.
August you must hurry and oh great Ficus carica produce, produce an abundance of fruiticious spawn this season! For vitamin B6, the fiber but mostly for the lusciously sweetness as we bite into the fresh flesh!
Brandied Figs (the healthy version)
2 cups coconut cream
1 1/2 cups coconut milk, divided
2/3 cup clover honey
2 large eggs
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
12 black Mission figs, rinsed, dried, stems removed and cut in half
1 cup coconutsugar
6 tablespoons unsalted butter (use palm butter if preferred)
1 cup Brandy
Method1. Make the ice cream. Combine the cream, 1 cup milk and honey in a medium saucepan over medium heat and bring to a boil. Once it reaches a boil, remove from heat, cover and let it cool for approximately 30 minutes.
In a separate bowl whisk together the eggs and salt. Slowly pour in 1 cup of the cream mixture into the eggs while continuing to whisk.Then pour the eggs and cream back into the cream mixture and cook over medium-low heat, stirring continually with a wooden spoon, until the mixture is thick enough to cover the back of a spoon and the temperature reaches 170°-175° Fahrenheit.
Remove from heat, strain the mixture through a sieve into a nonreactive bowl, cover and chill. At this point in time, use your ice cream machine.
This can be done a day or two in advance
.2. Make the sauces.
For the caramel, add the sugar to a large saucepan evenly and place over medium-high heat. As the sugar starts to melt, shake the pan to redistribute. (Keep a close eye on it because the sugar can go from just right to burnt in a matter of seconds.) Once the sugar turns to amber, remove from heat and drop in the butter and the remaining milk. The sugar will bubble violently, but whisk the added ingredients to combine, then cover and cool.
Separately, add the Brandy to a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Continue to reduce by 3/4 (or to 4 tablespoons) or until the Brandy is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and allow to cool.3.
Roast the figs:
Preheat the oven to 450° Fahrenheit. Place the figs, cut side up, on a foil lined sheet pan and roast in the oven for 10-15 minutes, or until the figs begin to brown. To plate the dish, spoon some caramel in the center of a plate, place an ice cream scoop on top of the caramel, arrange three fig halves around the ice cream and drizzle with the Brandy reduction.