Ladies and gentlemen, the end of summer/beginning of autumn calls for a fig-centered menu.
Thus was conceived Fig Fest at Chef Portia’s. It’s kind of like Shark Week, but with more figs and fewer sharks. No sharks, actually. And it’s only one night, not a whole week. So in conclusion it is not at all like Shark Week.
The Fig Fest menu included:
- Fig and thyme cocktail
- Moutabal (which is kind of like baba ganoush but, in my opinion, even more delicious)
- Fig and arugula pizza
- Peach and pecan salad
- Lamb with thyme and haricots verts
- Fig and honey goat cheesecake
GOAT cheesecake? I mean, doesn’t that sound kinda gross? I promise you, it is not. It is a REVELATION. I don’t even particularly like cheesecake, but I liked this. Let’s get the fig party started. Recipe adapted from Jo Cooks.
♫ Suggested listening: something sweet. ♫
Click to listen: Jessie Ware – “Sweetest Song”
- 1 cup flour
- 14 tbsp butter (yes!)
- 1/3 cup ground almonds
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 16 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
- 11 oz soft goat cheese, at room temperature
- 5 tbsp. softened butter
- 4 eggs
- ¾ cup sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Zest from 1 lemon
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 10 – 12 black figs, cut into quarters
- Toasted pecans
- For the base, pulse the flour, butter, almonds and sugar into fine crumbs in the food processor. At the end, add a tiny bit of water and pulse some more, until the mixture becomes dough-y. Press the mixture into a 9″ springform pan.
- Refrigerate for 2 hours, then bake at 350 for about 30 min, until golden and cooked through.
- For the cheesecake, put the cream cheese, goat cheese, butter, eggs, sugar, vanilla, lemon juice and zest in the food processor and process until smooth smooth.
- Grease the sides of the springform pan above the base and pour in the mixture.
- Bake until set, about 30-40 minutes. It will look something like this.
- Let it cool to room temperature — this could take awhile, especially in DC heat.
- Once it’s cool, pile on the figs and the pecans, then drizzle liberally with honey like some sort of wild, sweet-toothed Jackson Pollock.
- Astound your friends!