Thursday, October 7, 2010

Packages of Fig and Chèvre

Okay, I have to share a nummy, simple recipe with everyone. I'm not sure where and when fresh figs are available to everyone, but I just checked my blog stats today, and I apparently have readers in 34 countries! Even if half were accidental hits or spammers, that leaves 17 countries, a few of which must have figs.

Last month my friend Claire and I stopped to eat at a little restaraunt near my apartment called Viktor on Place des Trois Ormeaux.  I had been there before with some friends where we all sampled a different salad. All of them were top notch. Which means one should always test again to be extra sure. I mean, when it comes to FOOD, I need to be extra sure. So we stopped in for lunch and both ordered the intriguing sounding salad with packets of chevre and figs. Whatever that might be! And one bite of these warm, bundles of melted goat's cheese and sweet figs and we were ooing and ahhing. 

Last week a friend gave me a box of figs from her tree. And as it happened, I actually had chevre in the fridge and a package of phyllo pastry in the freezer. There was no choice. The kitchen called.  And these were so simple!

So here we go. This is what you need:

Phyllo pastry (Filo)
fresh figs
Chevre (goat's cheese)
sea salt

I love working with phyllo pastry. It's simple but if you've never done it, I'll walk you through it.

First important step is to thaw it properly. Leave it in the box and thaw it in the refrigerator for 24 hours. If you let it thaw too quickly, it will get doughy and stick together. Once thawed, open the package, unroll the stack of paper thin layers of and cover them with a cloth just SLIGHTLY moistened. This keeps the layers from drying out at which point they're unusable. Carefully lay the first layer on the board or counter and brush with a light layer of melted butter. Gently pull another layer off the pile and cover the buttered sheet (keep the rest covered as you work). Don't worry if the sheets tear.  Just piece them back together and all will be well. I promise. Continue the process with as many layers as needed. For this recipe, I only used 5 layers. When you're finished, roll up the extra leaves, put them back in the package they came in, wrap with plastic wrap and put them back in the freezer.

Cut the dough into squares, about 4" by 4". In the center of each square, place a slice of fresh fig, a slice of chevre and sprinkle it with sea salt. Not too much. Just enough to pop the flavors.

Fold the dough around the filling like a little package and place them on a baking sheet, smooth side up. Brush a little melted butter and the top and pop them into a 375 degree oven for 10 minutes. 

okay...the pan looks dirty...because it was. I was on batch number 2! And yes, you can take a little more time to make the packets look neater. Taking pretty photos for this blog was not my top priority at this moment.

That's it! C'est tout!

Serve these warm as an appetizer (apero or entre) or as we ate them, atop a mixed baby green salad dressed with a light balsamic vinaigrette. In the interest of taking photos, which I still haven't mastered, I ate TONS of these. Oh how I suffer! All I need is one little remark about how bad these photos are, and I'm going to have to do it all over again... until I get it right!

Bon Appetit!



  1. Delana, this sounds so scrumptious! I make an appetizer using figs stuffed with goat cheese, and wrapped in prosciutto! It's simply decadent.

  2. Those look delicious. I believe I just saw figs at the store the other day. I might have to go back and get some.

  3. I make the same thing with Roquefort instead of chevre. I'll usually whip up a batch whenever I'm having a party. Might try it with chevre next time :-)

  4. Sounds Yummy! How do I get the shell off the cheese?

  5. Bonjour Delana~ these little parcels looks excellent for taking to my end of term French classe!
    The photo's you asked me about from my blog~ were taken in the lovely village of Caromb just north of Carpentras.So very non-touristy there.

  6. Thanks for the recipe. I noticed last week that our Whole Foods stores now have figs. I just looked at them and walked away. Now I have a reason to buy them. We depend on other states, like California to provide them for us.

  7. Figs I adore but goat's cheese - yuk! I loathe the stuff and the smell alone can make me want to vomit.

    Hugs from the UK.

  8. Figs are sexy. I wanted to write a post about them buy my in-laws read my blog (the only way they get our news) and I couldnt bring myself to say 'figs are sexy' with them watching.
    Great should have your own cooking show too.
    A x

  9. Gary-that sounds wonderful. Make it for me when I come back at Christmas, okay? With a great bottle of wine, of course!

    Lisa- get thee to the grocery store.

    Fly-you must have figs right now? many little time.

    Anonymous-this has to be Jeanmarie. If you buy it fresh it doesn't have a shell!

    Dianne- are you a French teacher or a student? I don't know that village. I'll have to find it next time I'm up there. Looks lovely. And we are still being inundated with tourists here.

    JoAnne- I used to walk past them too. No more! Great jam, great spreads for baked goods, delicious with meat. I'm hooked.

    FF-I used to despise goats cheese. Really. Made me want to gag. But in the interest of being polite here, where it is ALWAYS served, I've actually learned to like it. But I still always ask for the least strong variety which is normally the fresh. But that doesn't have enough flavor for this recipe. Anyway, you're back in the land of a whole new variety of stinky cheese!

    Aidan- I laughed out loud when I read that. And yes, figs ARE sexy. The shape, the color on the outside, the color on the inside, the flavor. In-laws be damned! Geez, I really wanted someone to tell me I had to do this over with new photos!

  10. My mouth is watering and I am drooling (while painting my new office walls...). Make them for me some time???

  11. My mouth is watering and I am drooling (while painting my new office walls...). Make them for me some time???

  12. Is this the place we had the salads to die for with the grapefruit and avocado and crayfish? I think yes!!??

  13. LibbY-you're on! You'll need a culinary break!

    Eileen- yep, you think correctly! I had to go back!

  14. Delana,
    Nice recipe, but your can do better. ;-)

  15. Suzie...thank you. I was waiting for that. I just happen to have a little chevre...some figs....

  16. Have puff pastry and the cheese, going out for the figs this am. A glass of wine, a salad, dinner.


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