Fresh figs roasted in vanilla cream flavored with ground coriander seeds is a dessert that will have your guests begging for more. There is something about the muskiness of the figs that gives off a wanton come-have-me aroma en route from the oven to the table. When I made it other night, I thought it would serve six — but happily we were only three, for we finished it in a flash. And had there been more, we would have finished that too.
Figues rôties à la crème / Fresh figs roasted in vanilla cream
I had never encountered a fresh fig before coming to France, and can still remember my surprise at the taste of it. No relation at all to its cousin, the dried fig, which we’d enjoyed over the years in my family at Christmas time. The fresh figs of Avignon were already ripe in July, hanging low on the boughs of trees lining the road that I took to my daily classes on French structuralism. It was drowsily warm in the classroom, and the odor of the figs outside would send me into reveries that unfortunately affected my grades. To this day, the fresh fig is for me the most voluptuous of fruits, its elegant shape and rounded bottom enhanced by the sculpted beauty of its leaves, its exterior, deep purple or green, concealing the sweet lush red within.
The fig season is coming to an end, at least over here in France, so if you’d like to try this dessert now’s the time. The Everyday French Chef will be back on Monday with a recipe from one of my favorite neighborhood bistros. Happy cooking!