Sunday, 27 January 2013

Toasted goats cheese with fig pesto


2 dried/fresh figs, 1/2 orange, 75g
hazelnuts, 150g basil leaves, olive oil, goats cheese, rocket

Serves: 2 Preparation: 15 minutes

In my previous post, I brought you paprika pesto - earthy and comforting it's the exact opposite of my fig pesto which sets the tongue tingling with flavour stimulation. My personal favourite pesto is Genovese style, with the addition of black kamalata olives to add a juicy richness, but I can honestly say that this fig pesto goes to another level and will blow your mind. Some rich cheese and soft bread and you've got yourself the perfect summer lunch. I have always used fresh figs when making this, but as they're out of season, I tried using sticky, sweet, meltingly soft dried figs and it gave this a delicious, autumnal twist.

1) Add a good handful of fresh basil leaves to a mortar bowl and grind to a fine pulp.

2) Add a pinch of coarse sea salt, the hazelnuts and grind thoroughly.

3) Add a squeeze of orange juice, the olive oil and finely diced figs and stir to combine.

4) Spoon onto the goats cheese and toast under the grill for 3-4 minutes, serve with rocket as a salad or spread onto fresh bread.

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