The Return of Comfort Food!
So it seems the weather has finally turned and the autumn has officially set in.
Although I am a little somber to see the lighter evenings start to fade, autumn is hands-down my favourite season from a culinary point of view.
The comfort food that this time of year brings with it something very special. A seasonal period that only intensifies the enjoyment I get from developing recipes that warm the heart, soul and stomach!
Although a little late posting this recipe, I couldn’t let the amazing fig season go by without one final decadent dish. This time, its a full-on comfort food recipe – the perfect seasonal dish that delivers on both flavour and texture as well as being an ideal light dessert to finish off any meal.
But be quick; your time is nearly up for another year, with the fig season almost at it’s end. Simple, easy and super speedy, my baked figs with stem ginger, cinnamon and hazelnuts is an absolute must!
Don’t forget also, hazelnuts are abundant and bang on season this time of year, so make the most of these deliciously creamy nuts – perfect for sweet or savoury cooking!
- 100g hazelnuts
- 50g caster sugar
- 8 firm figs
- 2 -3 balls of stem ginger (a little of the syrup)
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 dessert spoon of runny honey
- 2 tbsp honey brandy (optional)
- Firstly, make the hazelnut praline. Place the hazelnuts on a lined baking tray and place in a pre-heated oven at 200°c/Gas 6 for 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and immediately place in a clean tea towel.
- Allow the nuts to steam in the tea towel for a minute or so before vigorously rubbing together to remove the skins. Some may be a little tougher than others, so some nuts may need to be rubbed by hand.
- Once the hazelnuts are skinned, place 50g of caster sugar and the nuts in a heavy-bottomed, non-stick pan over a medium heat. Stir occasionally to avoid burning and coat the hazelnuts in the melted sugar.
- Pour the mixture onto a non-stick baking sheet and allow to cool. Once relatively cool, place into the fridge to fully harden. Proceed with the figs.
- Carefully cut a cross into each fig and place in a baking dish. Turn the oven down to 180°c/Gas 5. Take the stem ginger and dice into small cubes. Distributed evenly over the cut figs and drizzle with a little of the syrup.
- Sprinkle on the cinnamon, then simply drizzle with the honey and brandy. Place in the oven and bake for 10-15 minutes, or until the figs have softened.
- To serve, place 2 figs on each plate, along with a generous scoop of stem ginger ice cream (I used the delicious Mendip Moments Ice Cream). Smash the praline using a rolling pin before generously scattering over the figs and ice cream. Finish by drizzling over the delicious syrup left in the baking dish.