Oct 15, 2014 04:00PM ● Published by Cate Reynolds
Figs are pretty fickle fruit so don’t get discouraged if you don’t succeed on your first attempt at getting a good batch. I have tried to make this salad in the past only to encounter rotten figs and canceling the whole operation. For the salad pictured I actually got the last container of brown turkey figs (the more commonly used fig), and then decided to grab the green figs just in case. Good thing I did because like so many times before the brown figs were utterly rotten inside. I did a little reading and found out that unfortunately, this is just the nature of the fig. When figs are harvested they must be ripe, otherwise they never will ripen. They’re so soft and small that transporting them is difficult. Even when you get your hands on a decent bunch of figs, there’s no telling when one fig to the next is going to be a good one. Given my history with figs I decided to add nectarines to the recipe as a back-up measure. I imagine anything from peaches to blackberries would be a tasty alternative/addition.
The second thing to watch out for is the prosciutto. Deli cut prosciutto is the best way to go, but once you’re there make sure they don’t slice it so thin that it’s impossible pull the meat apart into thin strips. At the same time, don’t get the prosciutto so thick that it feels like you’re eating bacon instead. Once you do get your happy, healthy figs, and your not-too-thin-or-thick prosciutto this salad combo won’t disappoint. It has all the components of a winner: savory nuts, salty cheese with a slight bite, and soft, sweet fruit. Oh yes, and the prosciutto. Full disclosure: I could live a happy life on prosciutto and nothing else… did I mention I’m a carnivore at heart? The recipe calls for spinach, but any dark leafy green will do. I used a blend of spinach, arugula, kale, and chard: the more variety the better in my eyes. I love the deep red color of the chard stems, which lends to the overall presentation of the dish. Best of all, this dish couldn’t be easier to make. Put everything on a plate and enjoy!
Ingredients - Serves 4
- ¼ cup sherry vinegar
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 cups fresh baby spinach
- ¼ cup chopped walnuts, toasted
- 8 fresh figs, quartered
- 1 nectarine, sliced
- 3 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto
- 1 ounce Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
1. Combine first 3 ingredients in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. For an alternate method to mix the dressing see the “kitchen tools of the week” segment below.
2. Place spinach on a serving plate. Add walnuts, figs, nectarines, and cheese.
3. Tear the prosciutto into thin strips, discarding the fat, and arrange on salad.
This particular recipe provided useful nutritional details that are as follows: (serving size: about 2 ½ cups spinach mixture and 1 tablespoon cheese; does not include nectarines) calories 292; fat: 11.5 g; carbohydrates 30.3 g; fiber 7.7 g; cholesterol 18 mg; iron 3.6 mg; sodium 611 mg; calc 140 mg
Adapted from: “Prosciutto and Fig Salad.” Cooking Light Fast & Fresh 30-Minute Meals! Time Inc. Lifestyle Group. 2013. Print.